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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
District of Massachusetts

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Tuesday, October 4, 2016

Worcester Sex Offender Convicted of Child Pornography Charges

BOSTON – A jury convicted a previously-convicted sex offender yesterday in connection with possessing child pornography.

Neil Sweeney, 51, was convicted following a six-day jury trial in U.S. District Court in Worcester of possessing and distributing child pornography.  U.S. District Court Judge Timothy S. Hillman scheduled sentencing for Jan. 10, 2016.

The charges arose from an federal online undercover operation. In April 2015, Sweeney used Gigatribe, an Internet file sharing program, to distribute dozens of videos and images of minors engaging in sexually explicit conduct to an undercover federal agent. 

In 1995, Sweeney was convicted in Worcester Superior Court for the indecent assault and battery on two boys, both under the age of 14.  As a result of those convictions, Sweeney was required to register as a Level 3 Sex Offender. 

The charging statutes provide for a mandatory minimum sentence of 15 years and no greater than 40 years in prison, five years of supervised release and a fine of $250,000.  Actual sentences for federal crimes are typically less than the maximum penalties.  Sentences are imposed by a federal district court judge based upon the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines and other statutory factors.

United States Attorney Carmen M. Ortiz; Harold Shaw, Special Agent in Charge of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, Boston Field Division; Matthew Etre, Special Agent in Charge of Homeland Security Investigations in Boston; Colonel Richard D. McKeon, Superintendent of the Massachusetts State Police; and Worcester Police Chief Steven Sargent, made the announcement.  The case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Greg A. Friedholm and Karin M. Bell of Ortiz’s Worcester Branch Office. 

Topic: 
Project Safe Childhood
Updated October 4, 2016