Tem­ple Hills man sen­tenced to 14 years in fed­eral pornog­ra­phy case

State po­lice in­ves­ti­gated 2007 in­de­cent ex­po­sure crime

The Enquire-Gazette - - News - By JOHN WHAR­TON jwhar­ton@somd­news.com Twit­ter: @JohnEn­tNews

Fed­eral prose­cu­tors re­port that a Prince Ge­orge’s County man, who pre­vi­ously pleaded guilty in St. Mary’s to an in­de­cent ex­po­sure of­fense, was sen­tenced Wed­nes­day to 14 years in prison for re­ceiv­ing child pornog­ra­phy, in­clud­ing video of a man sex­u­ally abus­ing a girl in Ar­kan­sas.

Arthur Charles Cle­ments, 57, of Tem­ple Hills, re­ceived his sen­tence from U.S. District Judge Ge­orge J. Hazel, who also or­dered that af­ter Cle­ments’ com­pletes his prison term, he will be on life­time su­per­vised re­lease, and must reg­is­ter as a sex of­fender in the place where he re­sides, where he is an em­ployee, and where he is a stu­dent, ac­cord­ing to the U.S. At­tor­ney’s Of­fice for Mary­land.

Mary­land State Po­lice, cred­ited this week for their role in the pornog­ra­phy in­ves­ti­ga­tion, con­ducted a 2007 in­ves­ti­ga­tion in St. Mary’s lead­ing to the in­de­cent ex­po­sure charge against Cle­ments, even­tu­ally re­solved through a guilty plea in cir­cuit court, ac­cord­ing to on­line court records. Cle­ments was sen­tenced to one year in jail, sus­pended to about four months in cus­tody with work-re­lease priv­i­leges and re­lease for al­co­hol and psy­cho­log­i­cal coun­sel­ing, to be fol­lowed by two years of su­per­vised pro­ba­tion.

In the fed­eral case, ac­cord­ing to the prose­cu­tors’ of­fice, Cle­ments’ plea agree­ment ac­knowl­edged that the Na­tional Cen­ter for Miss­ing and Ex­ploited Chil­dren re­ceived a re­port in April of last year of sus­pected child pornog­ra­phy from Mi­crosoft, af­ter Clem- ents up­loaded an image de­pict­ing chil­dren en­gaged in sex­u­ally ex­plicit con­duct to his One Drive ac­count. The cen­ter re­ferred the re­port to state po­lice, and state troop­ers and fed­eral agents con­ducted a raid last July at Cle­ments’ res­i­dence, where the law of­fi­cers seized a lap­top com­puter that con­tained more than 1,900 videos and 1,100 images of child pornog­ra­phy, in­clud­ing images and videos de­pict­ing sadis­tic or masochis­tic con­duct and other de­pic­tions of vi­o­lence per­formed on pre­pubescent chil­dren.

Foren­sic anal­y­sis of Cle­ments’ dig­i­tal me­dia re­vealed that he re­ceived child pornog­ra­phy via Skype, in­clud­ing a video re­ceived on March 25 of last year, the prose­cu­tors’ of­fice re­ports, and dur­ing a po­lice in­ter­view, Cle­ments ad­mit­ted that he down­loaded and dis­trib­uted child pornog­ra­phy and had been watch­ing child pornog­ra­phy for about 17 years.

“Cle­ments also ad­mit­ted chat­ting via Skype for at least six months with an adult male liv­ing in an­other state who was sex­u­ally abus­ing a nine year old girl,” ac­cord­ing to the prose­cu­tors’ of­fice. “Cle­ments ad­mit­ted to watch­ing live sex­ual con­duct be­tween the adult male and girl. Cle­ments had at least 34 videos and 25 images doc­u­ment­ing the sex­ual abuse of the mi­nor fe­male saved on his lap­top com­puter, in­clud­ing the [March 2015] video. Within 12 days, [fed­eral] agents ... iden­ti­fied and ar­rested the in­di­vid­ual with whom Cle­ments chat­ted via Skype [as] Joshua Lo­gan Thorn­ton, age 31, of Wynne, Ar­kan­sas. The child was res­cued.”

Thorn­ton pleaded guilty to one count of pro­duc­tion of child pornog­ra­phy last Novem­ber, the prose­cu­tors’ of­fice re­ports, and he was sen­tenced in Fe­bru­ary to 30 years in prison.

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