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Justice News

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

Wednesday, July 15, 2020

Somerset County Man Indicted on Child Pornography Charges

NEWARK, N.J. – A federal grand jury today indicted a Somerset County, New Jersey, man for allegedly distributing and possessing images of child sexual abuse, U.S. Attorney Craig Carpenito announced.

John Schulenburg, 65, of Basking Ridge, New Jersey, is charged with one count of distribution of child pornography and one count of possession of child pornography. He will be arraigned at a date to be determined. Schulenberg was arrested on a criminal complaint on this conduct on Nov. 6, 2019, and was released on $100,000 unsecured bond. 

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

In July 2019, an undercover law enforcement officer conducted an online session using a publicly available peer-to-peer (P2P) program, which allows internet users to trade digital files. During this session, a user shared multiple files of featuring images of child sexual abuse from an internet address traced to Schulenburg’s residence.

On Nov. 6, 2019, law enforcement lawfully obtained a computer from Schulenburg’s residence that contained hundreds of images and videos of child pornography, including images of prepubescent children being sexually abused. 

The count of distribution of child pornography carries a mandatory minimum penalty of 15 years in prison, a maximum penalty of 40 years in prison, and fine of $250,000. The count of possession of child pornography carries a mandatory minimum penalty of 10 years in prison, a maximum penalty of 20 years in prison, and fine of $250,000.

U.S. Attorney Carpenito credited the FBI Newark's Child Exploitation Human Trafficking Task Force, under the direction of FBI Special Agent in Charge Joe Denahan; the Somerset County Prosecutor's Office, under the direction of Prosecutor Michael H. Robertson, and the Bernards Township Police Department, under the direction of Chief Michael Shimsky, with the investigation leading to today’s indictment.

The government is represented by Assistant U.S. Attorney Vijay Dewan of the U.S. Attorney’s Office Criminal Division in Newark.

The charges and allegations contained in the indictment are merely accusations, and the defendant is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.

Project Safe Childhood
Press Release Number: 
Updated July 15, 2020