CONCORD — Brandon Gray, 22, of New Hampton, was sentenced in federal court on Monday to 70 months in prison, followed by 15 years of supervised release for possession of child pornography and cyberstalking, Acting United States Attorney John J. Farley of the District of New Hampshire announced today.
According to court documents and statements made in court, the defendant created a fake online identity pretending to be a teen pop star, and met a 14-year-old child on the Internet. From 2014 to 2016, the child took various sexually explicit pictures and videos of himself and sent them to the defendant. Eventually, the child discovered that the online persona was fake and attempted to stop communicating with the defendant. The defendant responded by sending him harassing texts, emails and chats over various social media outlets including messages threatening to post pornographic images of the child online. A search warrant was executed at the defendant’s residence and he was found to be in possession of various images and videos constituting child pornography. The defendant admitted to using the alias, to possessing sexually explicit images of the minor victim, and to threatening to post them online.
“Keeping the Internet safe for children is one of the highest priorities of my office,” said Acting United States Attorney John J. Farley. “I commend the collaboration between the Louisiana State Police and Homeland Security Investigations personnel in New Hampshire in locating and bringing this individual to justice. Cyber predators cannot hide behind a computer screen. When their actions cause real harm, there will be real consequences.”
This matter was investigated by Homeland Security Investigations, Manchester, the New Hampshire Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force, and the Louisiana State Police. The case was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Georgiana L. Konesky.
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. For more information about Project Safe Childhood.