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Justice News

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

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Tuesday, February 8, 2022

Registered Sex Offender Sentenced to 250 Months in Prison for Distribution of Child Pornography and Online Enticement

NEWARK, N.J. – A Union County, New Jersey, man was sentenced today to 250 months in prison for distributing multiple images and videos depicting child sexual abuse and soliciting two children to engage in sexually explicit conduct online, U.S. Attorney Philip R. Sellinger announced.

Christopher Gardiner, 39, of Cranford, New Jersey, previously pleaded guilty before U.S. District Judge Kevin McNulty to an indictment charging him with one count of distributing child pornography and two counts of online enticement of a minor to engage in criminal sexual conduct. Judge McNulty imposed the sentence today in Newark federal court.

According to documents filed in this case and statements made in court:

From March 2018 to June 2018, Gardiner engaged an undercover agent in an ongoing sexually graphic conversation on a web-based social media application. During the course of the conversation, Gardiner publicly posted multiple videos depicting the sexual abuse of children in a chatroom and sent similar videos to the undercover agent directly. Law enforcement subsequently discovered numerous images and videos of child sexual abuse on Gardiner’s electronic devices when he was arrested at his home in August 2018. Gardiner was previously convicted of endangering the welfare of a child/distribution of child pornography in Union County in 2007.

In addition to the prison term, Judge McNulty also sentenced Gardiner to five years of supervised release. Gardiner must also register as a sex offender.  

U.S. Attorney Sellinger credited special agents with the FBI, under the direction of Special Agent in Charge George M. Crouch Jr., with the investigation leading to today’s sentencing. He also thanked the Cranford Police Department, under the direction of Chief Ryan Greco, for its assistance.

The government is represented by Assistant U.S. Attorney Shawn Barnes of the U.S. Attorney’s Criminal Division in Newark.

Topic(s): 
Project Safe Childhood
Component(s): 
Press Release Number: 
22-041
Updated February 8, 2022