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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Northern District of New York

Tuesday, February 27, 2018

Albany Woman Charged with Distributing and Receiving Child Pornography

ALBANY, NEW YORK – Michelle M. Syler, age 49, of Albany, was arrested and charged today for distributing and receiving child pornography.

The announcement was made by United States Attorney Grant C. Jaquith and Vadim D. Thomas, Special Agent in Charge of the Albany Field Office of the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI).

According to a complaint, Syler distributed and received child pornography through a peer-to-peer, file-sharing network, between December 30, 2017 and February 27, 2018.

The charges in the complaint are merely accusations. The defendant is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.

Syler appeared today before United States Magistrate Judge Christian F. Hummel, who ordered her detained pending further proceedings.

If convicted, Syler faces at least 15 years and up to 40 years in prison, and a term of post-imprisonment supervised release of at least 5 years and up to life.  A sentence is imposed by a judge based on the particular statute the defendant is charged with violating, the United States Sentencing Guidelines, and other factors. 

This case is being investigated by the FBI and its Child Exploitation Task Force, and is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Michael Barnett.

This case is being prosecuted as part of Project Safe Childhood.  Launched in May 2006 by the Department of Justice, Project Safe Childhood is 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


Project Safe Childhood
Updated February 28, 2018