On June 1, 2018, Neil Timothy Aho, 45, of Menlo Park, California, was sentenced to 17 years in prison and a lifetime of supervised release for distributing child pornography.
Benjamin G. Greenberg, United States Attorney for the Southern District of Florida, Mark Selby, Special Agent in Charge, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s Homeland Security Investigations (ICE-HSI); Scott Israel, Sheriff, Broward County Sheriff’s Office (BSO) and Rick Maglione, Chief, Fort Lauderdale Police Department, made the announcement.
United States District Judge Kenneth A. Marra sentenced Aho to 204 months in prison and a lifetime of supervised release. Aho must also register as a sex offender. Aho previously pled guilty to one count of distribution of child pornography, in violation of Title 18, United States Code, Section 2252(a)(2).
According to court documents, between 2012 and 2014, while Aho was living in South Florida, he amassed a large collection of child pornography which he attempted to hide from law enforcement detection using highly sophisticated software encryption techniques. In June of 2015, after Aho had relocated to California, law enforcement was able to establish a connection to the defendant's computer and thereafter downloaded child pornography files from him. Each of the files, that was downloaded from Aho’s computer, contained videos of minor children engaging in sexually explicit conduct with adult males. In 2015, the defendant was arrested in relation to this investigation. The investigation revealed that Aho possessed over 3,000 videos and 6,000 images depicting child pornography, including children under the age of 6 engaged in sexually explicit conduct with adults.
This case was brought as part of Project Safe Childhood, a nationwide initiative to combat the growing epidemic of child sexual exploitation and abuse, launched in May 2006 by the Department of Justice. Led by U.S. 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 www.projectsafechildhood.gov.
Mr. Greenberg commended the investigatory efforts of the ICE-HSI, BSO and Fort Lauderdale Police Department in this matter. This case was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorneys Corey Steinberg and Gregory Schiller.