BANGOR — A Seal Cove man pleaded guilty Oct. 4 in federal court to three counts of producing child pornography, one count of transporting child pornography and one count of possessing child pornography, Acting U.S. Attorney Donald E. Clark announced.
According to court records, on July 6, Keegan T. Richardson, 28, entered a private chat group on the internet and began communicating with an FBI undercover agent. This chat group was known to the agent as a place where people met, discussed and traded original images of underage children and links containing child pornography. Richardson confirmed that he had access to a female minor and shared multiple sexually explicit images of the minor with the agent. Shortly afterward, a search warrant was obtained for Richardson’s residence and phone, and he was arrested. Investigators later learned that he had access to two other minors. On his phone, a forensic examiner found multiple sexually explicit images of all three minors. Richardson had taken the images with his phone. The forensic examiner also found multiple additional images on the phone of sexually explicit conduct involving different minors.
Richardson faces a minimum of 15 years and a maximum of 30 years in prison for each production count, a minimum of five years and a maximum of 20 years in prison for the transportation count, and up to 20 years in prison for the possession count. He also faces a fine of up to $250,000 for each count, and a term of supervised release of between five years and life. He will be sentenced after the completion of a presentence investigation report by the U.S. Probation Office. A federal district court judge will determine any sentence after considering the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines and other statutory factors.
The FBI, the Hancock County Sheriff’s Office, the Maine State Police and the Maine Drug Enforcement Agency investigated the case.
This case was brought as part of Project Safe Childhood, a nationwide initiative to combat the growing epidemic of child sexual exploitation and abuse launched in May 2006 by the Department of Justice. Led by U.S. Attorneys’ Offices and the Department’s Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section, 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 to identify and rescue victims.
For more information about Project Safe Childhood, visit www.justice.gov/psc.