RICHMOND, Va. (WRIC) — A Chesterfield man pleaded guilty to three counts of possession in Chesterfield County Circuit Court on Thursday.
22-year-old Benjamin Baker Thompson of North Chesterfield will serve two years in prison after Judge David Johnson suspended eight years of his 10 year sentence.
Thompson was identified through an undercover investigation by a law-enforcement officer into the trading of child pornography over peer-to-peer networks on the Internet.
The officer came into contact with an individual who was sharing child pornography over the Internet and was subsequently able to download numerous files containing child pornography directly from the individual’s computer.
Through further investigation, the officer determined that the files originated from a computer located in the defendant’s residence in North Chesterfield, Virginia.
Based on this information, the officer obtained a search warrant for the defendant’s residence. During the search, the defendant voluntarily admitted seeking out and downloading child pornography from the Internet. A subsequent forensic examination of the defendant’s computers confirmed the presence of child pornography depicting prepubescent children engaged in sexually explicit conduct.
“The trading and possession of child pornography significantly contributes to the cycle of abuse that young victims must endure,” Attorney General Mark Herring said in a release. “Through his actions, the defendant played a role in further victimizing these children. I want to extend my thanks to the investigating officers in this case and to those who work tirelessly to protect children both here in Virginia and elsewhere.”