CONCORD - Joseph Gaudreau, 25, of Somersworth, was sentenced to 90 months in federal prison for possessing and distributing child pornography, Acting United States Attorney John J. Farley 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 previously pleaded guilty on January 7, 2021. In addition to the prison sentence, Gaudreau will be under supervised release for seven years once he is released.
“In order to protect children, we work closely with our law enforcement partners to investigate crimes involving child pornography and child exploitation,” said Acting U.S. Attorney Farley. “As this prison sentence demonstrates, crimes against children are serious offenses with very significant penalties. This sentence should serve as a warning that those who possess or distribute child sexual abuse images will be held accountable for their unlawful and disturbing conduct.”
“Today’s sentencing of Gaudreau is a significant step toward preventing him from further possessing and distributing repulsive online child abuse images such as those uncovered in this investigation,” said William S. Walker, Acting Special Agent In Charge, Homeland Security Investigations, Boston. “HSI hopes that the sentence imposed today will bring some measure of justice to the innocent victims who were exploited by the repeated distribution of these illicit images by Gaudreau and his cohorts. Today’s sentencing would not have been achieved without the crucial teamwork and strong support of the New Hampshire Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force, the New Hampshire State Police, the Somersworth Police Department and the Office of the U.S. Attorney for New Hampshire.”
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. For more information about Project Safe Childhood, please visit www.projectsafechildhood.gov.
Department of Justice
Office of the U.S. Attorney
District of New Hampshire