U.S. Attorney's Office
District of Massachusetts
(617) 748-3100
May 21, 2015

Worcester Sex Offender Arrested for Distributing Child Pornography

BOSTON—A convicted sex offender was arrested yesterday on child pornography charges.

Neil Sweeney, 49, of Worcester, was charged with possession and distribution of child pornography. Sweeney was arrested yesterday morning at his Elm Street residence and is presently being held without bail.

According to court documents, in April 2015, Sweeney distributed dozens of videos and images of minors engaging in sexually explicit conduct over the Internet to a federal undercover agent. The investigation was initiated by members of the FBI Newark Division; it was referred to the FBI Boston Division when the investigation revealed that Sweeney resided in Massachusetts. In 1995, Sweeney was convicted in Worcester Superior Court for indecent assault and battery on a person under 14 years of age. As a result of that conviction, Sweeney was required to register as a Level 3 sex offender.

If convicted of distribution of child pornography, Sweeney faces a mandatory minimum sentence of 15 years and no greater than 40 years in prison, five years of supervised release, and a fine of $250,000. If convicted of possession of child pornography, Sweeney faces a mandatory minimum sentence of 10 years and no greater than 20 years in prison, five years of supervised release, and a fine of $250,000. Actual sentences for federal crimes are typically less than the maximum penalties. Sentences are imposed by a federal district court judge based upon the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines and other statutory factors.

United States Attorney Carmen M. Ortiz; Vincent B. Lisi, Special Agent in Charge of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, Boston Field Division; Bruce M. Foucart, Special Agent in Charge of Homeland Security Investigations in Boston; Colonel Timothy P. Alben, Superintendent of the Massachusetts State Police; and Worcester Police Chief Gary J. Geeme, made the announcement today. The case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Greg A. Friedholm of Ortiz’s Worcester Branch Office.

The details contained in the charging documents are allegations. The defendant is presumed to be innocent unless and until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt in a court of law.

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