News and Press Releases

Asheville Man Sentenced To 9 Years In Prison On Child Pornography Charges

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
June 22, 2012

United States Attorney Anne M. Tompkins Western District of North Carolina

ASHEVILLE, N.C. – U.S. District Judge Martin Reidinger sentenced an Asheville man on Tuesday, June 19, 2012, to serve 108 months in prison for child pornography offenses, announced Anne M. Tompkins, U.S. Attorney for the Western District of North Carolina.

U.S. Attorney Tompkins is joined in making today’s announcement by Chief William Anderson, of the Asheville Police Department.

In April 2011, Mark Albert Polozzolo, 35, of Asheville, was indicted on child pornography charges in a superseding bill of indictment. In June 2011, Polozzolo pled guilty to receiving imagines containing child pornography. According to court documents and statements made in court, Polozzolo exchanged child pornography images via the Internet over a period of several months with an undercover officer of the Asheville Police Department using peer-to-peer software. Court records indicate that the images possessed by Polozzolo contained sadistic and masochistic depictions of minors and other pornographic images of children as young as four years old.

Judge Reidinger also ordered Polozzolo to serve the rest of his life under court supervision after he is released from prison, and ordered the defendant to pay $5,000 as restitution.

“This type of crime victimizes the most innocent and vulnerable members of society, our children,” said U.S. Attorney Tompkins. “Sadly, for these children, their victimization is perpetuated over and over when offenders like Polozzolo continue to share these images through the Internet. Today, with the help of our vigilant partners at the Asheville Police Department, we are sending a strong message that these crimes will not be tolerated.”

Chief Anderson stated, “I would like to congratulate the men and women of the Asheville Police Department and the U.S. Attorney’s Office for their diligent work on removing this individual from our community. Our children are our greatest asset and we must make every effort to keep them safe. This type of sadistic behavior cannot and will not be tolerated in our communities and we will make every effort to remove subjects like Mr. Polozzolo from our streets.”

Polozzolo has been in local federal custody in the Western District of North Carolina since May 2011. Upon designation of a federal facility, he will be transferred into the custody of the Federal Bureau of Prisons. All federal sentences are served without the possibility of parole.

The investigation was handled by the Asheville Police Department. The case was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney David A. Thorneloe of the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Asheville.

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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