News and Press Releases

Carbon County Man Pleads Guilty to Receiving and Distributing Child Pornography

August 19, 2011

     The United States Attorney's Office for the Middle District of Pennsylvania announced that a 70-year-old Nesquehoning, Pennsylvania resident pleaded guilty today before Senior U.S. District Court Judge Edwin M. Kosik to receiving and distributing child pornography.

     According to United States Attorney Peter J. Smith, Eugene F. Hartzell admitted that he used a computer to download and share images of child pornography during March through September 2010.

     Hartzell was indicted by a federal grand jury on November 16, 2010, as a result of an investigation by the Federal Bureau of Investigation, including offices in Rochester, New York and Scranton.

     Hartzell faces a mandatory minimum sentence of five years in prison, a potential maximum sentence of 20 years in prison, a fine of up to $250,000, and a potential life term of supervised release to follow any prison sentence. Hartzell will also be subject to sex offender registration requirements.

     U.S. Attorney Smith noted that 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 United States 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

    The case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Francis P. Sempa.


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