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September 9, 09

NEWS / Saugerties, New York Man Pleads Guilty to Possession of Child Pornography

ALBANY, NY—United States Attorney Andrew T. Baxter and John F. Pikus, Special Agent-in-Charge, Federal Bureau of Investigation, Albany Division, announced today that ALAN MASKELL, age 60, of Saugerties, New York, pled guilty in United States District Court in Albany before the Honorable Thomas J. McAvoy to Count One of an indictment charging him with the possession of child pornography.

In connection with his plea today, MASKELL admitted the following in a written plea agreement and during his plea proceedings:

Between about December, 2007 and February 14, 2008, MASKELL, while in his residence, used his Gateway laptop computer to access the internet wherein he utilized Yahoo! Messenger; “Ringo” file sharing software; and various websites to view and obtain electronic files/still images that contained child pornography. MASKELL then downloaded some of these child pornography images to the aforementioned laptop computer and saved them in electronic subfolders.

In early December, 2007 the defendant shipped the aforementioned laptop computer from his residence to a computer repair store located in LaVergne, Tennessee. In late December, 2007 a repair technician from the computer repair store contacted Tennessee authorities and reported identifying suspected child pornography on said computer. On January 11, 2008, agents from the Federal Bureau of Investigation executed a federal search warrant on MASKELL’s Gateway laptop computer referenced above.

Forensic examination of MASKELL’s laptop computer was subsequently conducted. Twelve (12) still images depicting a minor posed in a lewd and lascivious manner, as those terms and phrases are defined in Title 18, United States Code, Section 2256(2), were recovered from said computer. The child pornography still images recovered from MASKELL’s laptop computer were found in various electronic folders. Said images depict individuals under the age of 18 engaged in, among other things, the lascivious exhibition of the genitals and pubic area. All of the images recovered depict actual, as opposed to computer generated, images of minors engaged in such conduct.

MASKELL knowingly and willfully possessed the aforesaid images found on said computer. In addition, he possessed the images knowing that they depicted minors engaged in sexually explicit conduct. MASKELL obtained such images from, among other places, individuals and websites located outside the State of New York. Moreover, such images, and the actual computer used to obtain and download these depictions, were transported in interstate and foreign commerce and were produced using materials that had been mailed, or shipped or transported in interstate and foreign commerce.

Sentencing was scheduled by Judge McAvoy for January 11, 2010, at 1:30 p.m. in U.S. District Court in Albany, New York. MASKELL faces a maximum penalty of 10 years imprisonment. He also faces a fine of up to $250,000.00. MASKELL was released pending his sentencing.




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