Atlantic County, New Jersey, Man Arrested on Child Pornography Charges
CAMDEN, N.J. – An Atlantic County, New Jersey, man was arrested and charged today with receiving and distributing images of child sexual abuse, U.S. Attorney Craig Carpenito announced.
Carlos Santiago Gomez, 27, of Absecon, New Jersey, turned himself in at the Atlantic City Resident Office of the FBI this morning after returning from a business trip to Texas. He is charged by complaint with one count of receiving child pornography and one count of distributing child pornography. Santiago Gomez made his initial appearance before U.S. Magistrate Judge Ann Marie Donio in Camden federal court.
According to documents filed in this case and statements made in court:
From April 2016 through March 27, 2018, Santiago Gomez allegedly viewed, received and distributed images of child sexual abuse, including images of prepubescent children. Santiago Gomez, who was employed in the IT field, administered a KIK group in which participants traded images and videos of child sexual abuse. (KIK is an instant messaging app). While administering the group, Santiago provided instructions, including:
“New comers, welcome. There are just some rules to keep in mind when posting and maintaining your position. 1. Girls only 2. No Toddler 3. Videos only, no links no pictures. 4. Goes without saying but be active. Thanks and enjoy.”
“Please don’t post adult videos.”
“If you’re using FREENET, you might as well call the cops and turn yourself in. TOR, though not 100% safe by default, is slow but way better than FREENET.”
On March 27, 2018, law enforcement officers searched Santiago Gomez’ residence and seized numerous computers and electronic devices, including Santiago Gomez’ cellular telephone. Although law enforcement officers have not yet fully completed their analysis of Santiago’s electronic devices, agents have uncovered more than 1,000 images and videos of child sexual abuse.
Each count of receiving or distributing child pornography carries a mandatory minimum sentence of five years in prison, a maximum potential penalty of 20 years in prison, and a $250,000 fine.
U.S. Attorney Carpenito credited special agents of the FBI, under the direction of Special Agent in Charge Gregory W. Ehrie; and the Atlantic County Prosecutor’s Office, under the direction of Prosecutor Damon G. Tyner, with the investigation leading to today’s charge and arrest.
The government is represented by Assistant U.S. Attorney Diana Vondra Carrig of the U.S. Attorney’s Office Criminal Division in Camden.
The charges and allegations in the complaint are merely accusations, and the defendant is considered innocent unless and until proven guilty.