GREENBELT, Md. (May 27, 2008) - Thomas Cargill, age 42, of Endicott, New York, formerly of Hollywood, Maryland, pleaded guilty on May 16 to possession of child pornography, announced United States Attorney for the District of Maryland Rod J. Rosenstein.
According to his guilty plea, on February 14, 2007, Cargills girlfriend brought two CDs, which she suspected contained child pornography and Cargills desktop computer to the St. Mary's County Sheriff's Office. Detectives viewed the two CDs and saw numerous pictures of prepubescent females, from as young as about six years old, engaged in sexually explicit conduct.
On February 20, 2007, St. Mary's County detectives interviewed Cargill, who admitted that he downloaded child pornography from the Internet approximately twice a week, using a file sharing program. Cargills CDs and computer were subsequently forensically examined by FBI agents. The CDs contained approximately 271 images of child pornography, and many of the images were from a website known by the FBI to contain images of child pornography, which is hosted outside of the United States.
On July 20, 2005, Cargill pleaded guilty in the Circuit Court for St. Marys County, Maryland, to possessing child pornography and was sentenced to six months imprisonment, suspended, and one year supervised probation.
Based on his previous state conviction for possession of child pornography Cargill faces an enhanced minimum mandatory sentence of 10 years, and a maximum of 20 years in prison, followed by supervised release for life. U.S. District Judge Roger W. Titus has scheduled sentencing for September 4, 2008 at 9:00 a.m.
This is the second case in two days where, because of a previous state conviction for a sexual offense involving a child or children, the defendant faces an enhanced minimum mandatory sentence of ten years in prison. Yesterday, Richard David Morris, age 25, of Reisterstown, Maryland, pleaded guilty to the same charges. Morris had been previously convicted in the State for sexual abuse of a minor.
This case was brought as part of Project Safe Childhood, a nationwide initiative designed to protect children from online exploitation and abuse. Led by the United States Attorneys 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, please visit www.projectsafechildhood.gov. Details about Marylands program are available at http://www.usdoj.gov/usao/md/Safe-Childhood/index.html.
United States Attorney Rod J. Rosenstein praised the St. Marys County Sheriffs Office and the Federal Bureau of Investigation for their investigative work.
Source: United States Attorney Rod J. Rosenstein