Monmouth County Man Pleads Guilty to Possessing Images of Child Sexual Abuse
TRENTON, NJ—A previously convicted sex offender admitted today that he uploaded images of child sexual abuse to an online file-sharing network, U.S. Attorney Paul J. Fishman announced.
Layne Bracht, 32, of Highlands, New Jersey, pleaded guilty before U.S. District Judge Joseph E. Irenas in Camden federal court to an information charging him with one count of possession of child pornography.
According to documents filed in this case and statements made in court:
Bract admitted that on Oct. 28, 2013, he knowingly placed images and videos depicting child sexual abuse into shared folders that others could access via a peer-to-peer network. Special agents of the FBI executed a search warrant at his residence in Highlands on Jan. 15, 2014 and seized digital evidence that contained numerous videos and images depicting child sexual abuse, including material involving prepubescent minors and sadistic or masochistic conduct. The digital evidence seized included three files previously downloaded from Bracht by law enforcement agents working in an undercover capacity on the peer-to-peer network.
In 2006, Bracht was arrested and charged with possession of child pornography, a charge to which he subsequently pleaded guilty. On April 2, 2008, U.S. District Judge Joseph E. Irenas sentenced Bracht to 30 months in prison to be followed by five years of supervised release. As a previously convicted sex offender, Bracht now faces a mandatory minimum penalty of 10 years in prison, a maximum potential penalty of 20 years in prison and a $250,000 fine. Sentencing is scheduled for March 13, 2015.
U.S. Attorney Fishman credited special agents of the FBI’s Child Exploitation Task Force, under the direction of Special Agent in Charge Aaron T. Ford in Newark, New Jersey, and the Monmouth County Prosecutor’s Office, under the direction of Acting Prosecutor Christopher Gramiccioni, with the investigation leading to today’s guilty plea.
The government is represented by Assistant U.S. Attorney Fabiana Pierre-Louis of the U.S. Attorney’s Office Criminal Division in Trenton.
Defense counsel: Brian P. Reilly Esq, Assistant Federal Public Defender, Trenton.