Somersworth Man, Joseph Gaudreau, Pleads Guilty to Child Pornography Crimes
CONCORD (STL.News) Joseph Gaudreau, 25, of Somersworth, pleaded guilty in federal court on Thursday to possessing and distributing child pornography, United States Attorney Scott W. Murray announced today.
According to court documents and statements made in court, on April 26, 2017, the New Hampshire State Police (“NHSP”) received three tips previously submitted to the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children by the online communications application Skype. The tips reported that on three separate occasions on March 21, 2017, the same user account uploaded files to Skype that were identified as child sexual abuse images. NHSP investigators later determined that the Skype account was associated with Gaudreau.
NHSP investigators spoke with Gaudreau at his residence in Somersworth on August 30, 2017. In a voluntary interview, Gaudreau admitted to possessing child pornography and sharing it with others on the internet using multiple applications, including Skype. He told law enforcement that he generally stored images in his Dropbox account, which he could access from any internet-capable device.
Law enforcement officers next obtained a search warrant for the contents of any Dropbox account associated with the username or e-mail that Gaudreau voluntarily provided them during the interview. The materials received from Dropbox included numerous video files and still images of child pornography.
Gaudreau is scheduled to be sentenced on April 20, 2021.
“Those who possess and distribute child pornography are exploiting vulnerable and innocent children,” said U.S. Attorney Murray. “In order to protect children from harm, we will continue to work closely with our federal, state, and local law enforcement partners to identify and prosecute the perpetrators of child pornography crimes.”
“Today’s conviction is one more step in the critical, ongoing fight against the illicit distribution of child exploitation images being shared online.” said William S. Walker, acting Special Agent in Charge, Homeland Security Investigations (HSI), Boston. “Without the close coordination and tireless efforts of our partners in the New Hampshire State Police, the New Hampshire Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force and the U.S. Attorney for New Hampshire, this individual would not have been brought to justice and the children depicted would have been continually re-victimized each and every time these horrific images were shared.”
This matter was investigated by the New Hampshire State Police, NH Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force, and Homeland Security Investigations with assistance from the Somersworth Police Department. The case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Anna Dronzek.
In February 2006, the Department of Justice introduced Project Safe Childhood, a nationwide initiative designed to protect children from online exploitation and abuse. Led by the United States Attorney’s Offices, 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 identify and rescue victims.