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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
District of Vermont

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Friday, July 24, 2020

Convicted Sex Offender from Underhill Charged with Possessing Child Pornography

The Office of the United States Attorney for the District of Vermont announced that Ryan Beaulieu, 43, of Underhill, Vermont, was arrested today and charged with possession of child pornography.  Beaulieu appeared today before the Honorable John M. Conroy, United States Magistrate Judge, and was ordered detained pending a detention hearing.

According to court records, the Vermont Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force (VT-ICAC) received information from a social media company and the Federal Bureau of Investigation that Beaulieu was distributing child pornography over the internet.  This morning, Special Agents of the Department of Homeland Security and investigators with the Vermont Attorney General’s Office executed a search warrant at Beaulieu’s residence in Underhill, Vermont.  In interviews with law enforcement, Beaulieu admitted to having accessed child pornography on his electronic devices.  Investigators discovered numerous images and videos of child pornography on Beaulieu’s devices, including recordings of video-chat sessions in which Beaulieu coached prepubescent female children, directing them to display their genitalia on camera while he masturbated.  

In 2013, Beaulieu was convicted of Lewd and Lascivious Conduct in Washington County District Court for conduct related to the sexual abuse of a child. 

If convicted of the new charge, Beaulieu faces a maximum of ten years of imprisonment.  The actual sentence however, would be determined by the Court with guidance from the advisory Federal Sentencing Guidelines.  The United States Attorney emphasizes that the charges in the complaint are merely accusations, and that the defendant is presumed innocent unless and until he is proven guilty.

United States Attorney Christina E. Nolan commended the investigative efforts of the Department of Homeland Security, the Vermont Attorney General’s Office, Vermont Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force, and the Federal Bureau of Investigation.  

The United States is represented in this matter by Assistant U.S. Attorney Jonathan Ophardt.  Defendant Beaulieu was represented by the Office of the Federal Public Defender for the purposes of his initial appearance, and has not yet retained counsel.

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 United States Attorney’s Offices and the Criminal Division's Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section (CEOS), Project Safe Childhood marshals federal, state, and local resources better to 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.justice.gov/psc.

 

Topic(s): 
Project Safe Childhood
Component(s): 
Updated July 24, 2020