State Task Force Targets Child Pornography

Attorney General Spitzer, and New York State Police and Superintendent James E. McMahon today announced that a Monroe County resident was arrested by State Police and arraigned in Greece Town Court on charges alleging that he possessed and distributed child pornography. The arrest and investigation is the result of a cooperative investigation and prosecution effort by state and county law enforcement officials.

Christopher Barton, 44, of the Town of Greece, was charged today with one count of Promoting a Sexual Performance by a Child. The charge is a class "D" felony and carries a maximum punishment of up to seven years in State prison. The defendant pleaded not guilty before Town Justice Raymond S. Dirraddo and posted bail of $1500. Barton's next scheduled court appearance is on September 21 in the Greece Town Court.

The investigation, conducted by the Internet Crimes Against Children (ICAC) Task Force alleges that in November of 1999 Barton was transmitting and receiving sexual explicit images of children on his personal computer through his connection to an internet service provider chat room.

Attorney General Spitzer said, "On line criminal conduct takes new shapes and forms each day, and overlaps several criminal jurisdictions. My office is committed to continuing to work closely with local, state and federal law enforcement agencies through our direct involvement in the Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force to investigate, prosecute, and convict those who traffic and solicit child pornography."

State Police Superintendent James E. McMahon said: "This investigation demonstrates the remarkable results of a multi-faceted enforcement effort. We will continue to work cooperatively with Attorney General Spitzer to successfully identify and arrest offenders who choose to involve our nation's youth in such detestable criminal activity."

The ICAC Task Force, headquartered in Albany, investigates, in conjunction with federal agencies and similar task forces around the country, individuals who use their computers and the Internet to lure children into illicit conduct or who possess and distribute child photography.

ICAC Task Force members: Investigators Joseph Donahue (New York State Police), Steve Filipowicz (State Police), Casey Quinlan (New York State Attorney General) were assisted by Investigator Michael Haggler (Attorney General's Office), and Supervising Investigator James Domres (Attorney General's Office). The prosecution was a joint effort of the Monroe County District Attorney Howard Relin, Assistant Attorneys General Paul F. McCarthy, Nancy Snyder and Deputy Bureau Chief, William Comiskey of the Attorney General's Criminal Prosecutions Bureau.

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