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Justice News

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

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Wednesday, June 17, 2020

Hudson Man Sentenced to 42 Months for Accessing Child Pornography

ALBANY, NEW YORK – Brian Northup, age 29, of Hudson, New York, was sentenced today to 42 months in prison for repeatedly accessing a child pornography web site available only through an anonymous Internet network.

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

United States District Judge Mae A. D’Agostino also ordered that Northup serve 10 years of post-release supervision, which will start after Northup is released from prison.  As a result of his conviction, Northup will be required to register as a sex offender upon his release from prison.

As part of his guilty plea on December 11, 2019, Northup admitted that in 2015, he accessed “Playpen,” an online forum through which registered users advertised, viewed, and distributed child pornography.  Images and videos shared through the site were highly categorized according to victim age and gender, and type of sexual activity depicted. 

Before the FBI seized the Playpen web site and shut it down, it was available only through an anonymous Internet network, which allowed users to access websites including Playpen without revealing their actual internet protocol address, geographic location, or other identifying information.  Northup admitted that he logged into Playpen in order to download child pornography content.

This case was investigated by the FBI with assistance from the Columbia County Sheriff’s Office, and was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Emmet O’Hanlon.

This case is prosecuted as part of Project Safe Childhood, a nationwide initiative designed to protect children from online exploitation and abuse. Led by the United States 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 http://www.justice.gov/psc/

Topic(s): 
Project Safe Childhood
Updated June 17, 2020