Nil Choudhury, 27, of Margate, N.J., was sentenced today to four years in state prison by Superior Court Bernard E. DeLury Jr. in Atlantic County. He pleaded guilty on March 28 to second-degree distribution of child pornography by offering and fourth-degree possession of child pornography. Those charges were contained in a 2013 state grand jury indictment. Choudhury will be required to register as a sex offender under Megan’s Law.
In pleading guilty, Choudhury admitted that he knowingly used file sharing software to make multiple files containing child pornography readily available for any other user to download from a designated “shared folder” on his computer. He became a target of Operation Ever Vigilant after a detective in the New Jersey State Police Digital Technology Investigations Unit (DTIU) downloaded two videos of child pornography from a shared folder on his computer while monitoring a file-sharing network popular with sex offenders. The computer address from which the videos were downloaded was traced to Choudhury’s residence. When members of the State Police DTIU, the State Police TEAMS South Unit and the New Jersey Internet Crimes Against Children (ICAC) Task Force executed a search warrant at Choudhury’s home on Feb. 19, 2013, a forensic preview of his personal computer revealed numerous images and videos of child pornography.
“Anyone who views and distributes child pornography takes part through their actions in the sexual exploitation of children,” said Acting Attorney General Lougy. “By sending these offenders to prison, we hammer home the deterrent message that sharing these repulsive materials is a very serious crime.”
“By sharing child pornography, Choudhury became a link in the network of offenders that extends from the manufacturers, who record their horrible crimes against children, to all of the users who perpetually re-victimize those children and motivate the manufacturers,” said Director Elie Honig of the Division of Criminal Justice. “We’ll continue to do all we can to lock up these predators.”
“Sharing these vile and repugnant pictures and videos only fuels the demand for distribution,” said Colonel Rick Fuentes, Superintendent of the New Jersey State Police. “Our message is clear: We are going after the producers, distributors, and users alike, and we are going to hold them accountable for their horrendous crimes.”
Deputy Attorney General Joseph Remy handled the sentencing for the Division of Criminal Justice Financial & Computer Crimes Bureau. Deputy Attorney General Anand Shah presented the case to the state grand jury.
Operation Ever Vigilant was a three-month investigation conducted by the State Police Digital Technology Investigations Unit, the Division of Criminal Justice, other members of the New Jersey Internet Crimes Against Children (ICAC) Task Force, and federal agents from the U.S. Postal Service. It resulted in arrests of 24 men and one juvenile male in February 2013.
During the investigation, detectives linked all of the defendants to alleged use of the Internet to download and distribute images of child pornography. Peer to Peer, or P2P, file sharing networks play a major role in the distribution of child pornography. There is a large library of images and videos known to law enforcement, and these electronic files can be traced in various ways on the Internet. Detectives traced transferred files to their origin and destination locations, downloading child pornography that the defendants allegedly offered from their computers on the P2P network.
The file-sharing networks used by offenders to distribute child pornography operate in the same manner as websites used for privately sharing music or movies. Those in possession of the illegal images can make them available on computers that they control for others to download. Because many of these videos and photos of child pornography keep recirculating, they result in the perpetual re-victimization of the children who were sexually assaulted or abused to produce them.
Acting Attorney General Lougy and Director Honig urged anyone with information about distribution of child pornography on the Internet – or about suspected improper contact by unknown persons communicating with children via the Internet or possible exploitation or sexual abuse of children – to please contact the New Jersey Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force Tipline at 888-648-6007.