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Former Camp Counselor to Serve 20 Years in Federal Prison for Child Pornography Offenses

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
December 14, 2011

Urbana, Ill. – A man who served as a summer counselor at a Kankakee, Ill., 4-H camp has been ordered to serve 20 years in federal prison for child pornography offenses. Chief U.S. District Judge Michael P. McCuskey sentenced Adam R. Fritz, 28, yesterday. Judge McCuskey further ordered that Fritz, 28, pay restitution of $12,000 to identified victims and that he remain on supervised release for the remainder of his life following completion of his prison sentence.

On Aug. 17, 2011, Fritz pled guilty to the three-count indictment returned by the grand jury in November 2009. Fritz was charged with one count each of advertising child pornography, and to distribution and possession of child pornography. Fritz, who had served as a counselor at Camp Shaw-Waw-Nas-See since 2000, has remained in the custody of the U.S. Marshals Service since his arrest on Nov. 30, 2009. At the time of his arrest, Fritz was employed as the camp’s Assistant Director.

According to court documents and information presented in court, Fritz came to the attention of law enforcement in June 2008, during an investigation by law enforcement agencies in New York of a private peer to peer file-sharing network. Unlike other widely known P2P systems, the private network required that users know the person’s username before they could make contact to either trade files or chat. The requestor then was required to be manually accepted, adding a layer of security for child pornography trafficking. Furthermore, when files were exchanged, they were encrypted in an effort to avoid detection by Internet service providers.
Investigators with the New York Suffolk County Police Department Computer Crimes Section, along with the FBI and the U.S. Attorney’s Office in the Eastern District of New York identified Fritz’s online address. On Apr. 2, 2009, law enforcement agents executed a federal search warrant where Fritz was residing, at Camp Shaw, located at N 6000 W Road, Manteno, Ill.

According to court documents, during a forensic examination of digital evidence seized, agents recovered more than 13,000 images and more than 900 video files of child pornography, including images depicting bestiality, and sadistic and masochistic images of children from infants to teens.

The case was investigated by the FBI and Suffolk County New York Police Department.

This case was brought as part of Project Safe Childhood, a nationwide initiative to combat the growing epidemic of child sexual exploitation and abuse launched in May 2006 by the Department of Justice. Led by U.S. Attorneys’ Offices and the Criminal Division’s Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section (CEOS), Project Safe Childhood marshals federal, state and local resources to better locate, apprehend and prosecute individuals who exploit children via the Internet as well as to identify and rescue victims. For more information about Project Safe Childhood, please visit www.projectsafechildhood.gov.

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