Jury Returns Guilty Verdict Against Connecticut Man for Advertising and Distributing Child Pornography
Anchorage, Alaska-U.S. Attorney Karen L. Loeffler announced that a Connecticut man was convicted in federal court in Anchorage on Thursday, February 6, 2014, for one count of Advertising Child Pornography and two counts of Distributing Child Pornography.
According to Assistant U.S. Attorney Kimberly Sayers-Fay, who prosecuted the case at trial, Michael J. Carroll, 59, a resident of Milford, Connecticut, was convicted by a jury of one count of Advertising Child Pornography and two counts of Distribution of Child Pornography. Trial evidence demonstrated that in late 2011, Carroll offered to trade sexually explicit images of children with other users involved in an international email group that an undercover agent in Alaska had infiltrated. Carroll also distributed close to 100 sexually explicit images on two occasions to the approximately fifty persons in this same email group, including the Alaskan undercover agent. The sexually explicit images of children that Carroll distributed involved victims ranging in age from infancy to prepubesence. Other offenders in the same email group were previously prosecuted in Alaska.
Carroll argued that remote control of his computer via “hacking” explained both the presence of hundreds of images and videos of child pornography on his multiple computers, as well as the distribution of child pornography from his Yahoo! email address. Carroll testified that he was a highly skilled computer technician with a very sophisticated network, and that despite this, hackers were able to cause his email to send messages reflecting the Internet Protocol (IP) address assigned to his home, and were also able to populate his computer system with sexually explicit images of children organized in a plethora of conspicuously named folders. Carroll likened his experience to that of Target, the retailer whose data was harvested by hackers. In convicting the defendant, the jury rejected the assertion that someone else was responsible for these crimes.
Chief U.S. District Court Judge Ralph R. Beistline scheduled Carroll’s sentencing for April 23, 2014. Carroll faces a mandatory minimum sentence of fifteen years’ imprisonment for advertising child pornography, and a maximum of thirty years’ imprisonment. For the distribution counts, Carroll faces a mandatory minimum sentence of five years. Carroll may also be fined up to $250,000 for each count, and faces a minimum of five years of supervised release.
Ms. Loeffler commends Homeland Security Investigations in Alaska and Connecticut, the Alaska Bureau of Investigation and the Anchorage Police Department for the investigation that culminated in Carroll’s convictions.