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BOSTON, MA - A North Grafton man was convicted yesterday in federal court of distributing child pornography to an undercover police officer posing on the Internet as a fourteen year old girl.

United States Attorney Carmen M. Ortiz and Warren T. Bamford, Special Agent in Charge of the Federal Bureau of Investigation - Boston Field Division announced that T. PATRICK KEARNEY, age 61, of North Grafton, Massachusetts, pled guilty before U.S. District Judge F. Dennis Saylor, IV to a 17-count indictment charging transportation, distribution and possession of child pornography.

At today’s plea hearing, the prosecutor told the Court that had the case proceeded to trial the Government’s evidence would have proven that in May and June 2008, the defendant engaged in sexually explicit chats over the Internet with an undercover police officer who was posing as a 14-year-old girl. During the conversations, the defendant sent the officer several images and videos of child pornography. The images and videos depicted children, some of whom were pre-pubescent, engaged in sexual acts with other minors and with adults. Some of the images contained victims who have been identified by the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children. In July 2008, the Government executed a search warrant at KEARNEY’S North Grafton residence where additional relevant evidence was obtained.

Judge F. Dennis Saylor, VI scheduled sentencing for June 2, 2010. With respect to the charges of transportation and distribution of child pornography, KEARNEY faces a minimum mandatory sentence of five years imprisonment and a maximum sentence of twenty years, to be followed by at least five years of supervised release and a $250,000 fine. With respect to the charge of possession of child pornography, KEARNEY faces up to ten years imprisonment, to be followed by at least five years of supervised release and a $250,000 fine.

The case was investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the Lexington, Virginia Police Department. It is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Karin M. Bell of Ortiz’s Worcester Branch Office.


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