Sykesville man given 33 months in porn case

He posted images of children in sex acts on Internet `newsgroups'

November 01, 2001|BY A SUN STAFF WRITER

A 22-year-old Sykesville man was sentenced in U.S. District Court in Baltimore yesterday to 33 months for shipping child pornography over the Internet.

Randy A. Koontz was sentenced by Chief Judge Frederic N. Smalkin after he pleaded guilty to collecting and posting images of children on Internet "newsgroups" that were accessed by people interested in child pornography.

According to papers filed in court by Assistant U.S. Attorney Andrew G.W. Norman, an FBI agent discovered pornographic images of pre-teenage children engaged in sexually explicit conduct last year when he visited an online newsgroup for child pornography.

The agent traced the images posted on the newsgroup to a computer account at Koontz's Sykesville home.

Koontz had called himself "Lord Sidious" and "Dr. Pedro" in the newsgroups, prosecutors said.

He placed images in the newsgroup six times between Jan. 6, 2000, and July 5, 2000, according to Norman's statement.

Koontz admitted to agents who came to his with a search warrant July 17, 2000, that he had posted the images, Norman said in the statement.

Koontz told investigators that he had saved almost every image of children that he could find on the Internet and that his collection had grown to more than 1,000 files, according to prosecutors.

He faced a maximum of 15 years in prison after he pleaded guilty May 21 to one count of transporting and shipping child pornography.

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