Hanover Man Pleads Guilty to Receiving Child Pornography
RICHMOND, Va. - John C. Willard, Jr., age 26, of Hanover County, Va., pleaded guilty today in U.S. District Court to receipt of child pornography. Neil H. MacBride, United States Attorney for the Eastern District of Virginia made the announcement. The sentencing of the defendant is scheduled for January 6, 2011.
According to court documents, Willard was detected trading child pornography on a peer-to-peer network by an FBI agent working in an undercover capacity in San Diego, CA. Based on this and other corroborating information, agents executed a search warrant at Willard’s residence, where they seized several computers and computer media. A subsequent forensic examination of the equipment revealed hundreds of child pornography images and dozens of child pornography videos saved within folders as part of Willard’s peer-to-peer file sharing program. The images portrayed prepubescent children being sexually abused and forced to engage in sadistic and masochistic conduct. Many of the children were identified by the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children, based in Alexandria, VA, as past victims identified in previous law enforcement investigations.
This case was investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the Hanover County Sheriff’s Department. Assistant United States Attorney Elizabeth C. Wu, and Special Assistant United States Attorney Gene Fishel, of the Virginia Attorney General’s Office, prosecuted the case on behalf of the United States.A copy of this press release may be found on the website of the United States Attorney's Office for the Eastern District of Virginia at http://www.usdoj.gov/usao/vae. Related court documents and information may be found on the website of the District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia at http://www.vaed.uscourts.gov or on http://pacer.uspci.uscourts.gov.