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Press Release

District of Columbia Man Sentenced to Four Years in Prison for Possessing Child Pornography

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, District of Columbia
Defendant Was Apprehended Through CyberTips from the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children

            WASHINGTON –Thomas Keelen, 53, of Washington, D.C., has been sentenced to four years in prison after earlier pleading guilty to a federal charge of possessing child pornography.

            The announcement was made by U.S. Attorney Matthew M. Graves, Wayne A. Jacobs, Special Agent in Charge of the FBI Washington Field Office’s Criminal Division, and Robert J Contee III, Chief of the Metropolitan Police Department.

            Keelen pleaded guilty in August 2021, in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia. He was sentenced yesterday by the Honorable Paul L. Friedman.  Upon completion of his prison term, Keelen will be placed on 10 years of supervised release.  He will also be required to register as a sex offender following his release from prison. 

            According to the government’s evidence, law enforcement received a series of eight Cybertips from the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children that indicated that Keelen was using email accounts to transfer and transport child pornography.  The eight Cybertips contained over 2,000 files, a portion of which depicted young boys being sexually abused by adult men.  In December of 2020, law enforcement executed a search warrant at Keelen’s home in Southeast Washington. Digital devices recovered during the search of Keelen’s home contained videos and images depicting the sexual exploitation of children as young as eight years old.

            Keelen was arrested on Dec. 2, 2020, and he has remained in custody.

            This case was investigated by the FBI Washington Field Office’s Child Exploitation and Human Trafficking Task Force. The task force is composed of FBI agents, along with other federal agents and detectives from northern Virginia and the District of Columbia. The task force is charged with investigating and bringing federal charges against individuals engaged in the exploitation of children and those engaged in human trafficking.

            This case was brought as part of the Department of Justice's Project Safe Childhood initiative. In February 2006, the Attorney General created Project Safe Childhood, a nationwide initiative designed to protect children from online exploitation and abuse. Led by the U.S. Attorney's 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

            In announcing the sentence, U.S. Attorney Graves, Special Agent in Charge Jacobs, and Chief Contee commended the work of those who investigated the case from the FBI's Child Exploitation Task Force, which includes members of the FBI's Washington Field Office and MPD’s Youth Investigations Division. They also commended the work of Assistant U.S. Attorney Amy E. Larson, who prosecuted the case.

Updated April 20, 2022

Project Safe Childhood
Press Release Number: 22-110