News and Press Releases

McKean County Man Charged with Child Pornography Offenses

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
October 16, 2012

ERIE, Pa. - A resident of Smethport, Pennsylvania, has been indicted by a federal grand jury in Erie on charges of violating federal laws relating to the sexual exploitation of children, United States Attorney David J. Hickton announced today.

The three-count indictment named Peter Nollen Hergenrother, 62, as the sole defendant.

According to the indictment presented to the court, Hergenrother received, distributed and possessed computer images depicting minors engaging in sexually explicit conduct.

The law provides for a maximum total sentence of 50 years in prison, a fine of$750,000, or both. Under the Federal Sentencing Guidelines, the actual sentence imposed would be based upon the seriousness of the offenses and the prior criminal history, if any, of the defendant.

Assistant United States Attorney Christian A. Trabold is prosecuting this case on behalf of the government.

The Pennsylvania State Police conducted the investigation leading to the indictment in this case.

An indictment is an accusation. A defendant is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.

Launched in February 2006, Project Safe Childhood is a nationwide initiative designed to protect children from online exploitation and abuse. Led by the U.S. Attorneys' Offices, 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 identify and rescue victims. For more information about Project Safe Childhood, please visit www.justice.gov/psc.

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