Feds score guilty plea in controversial child porn sting

(AP)
(AP)

NEWPORT NEWS, Va. (AP) — A Virginia man has pleaded guilty to child pornography charges that stem from a vast computer hacking sting by the FBI.

Federal prosecutors said 25-year-old Edward Joseph Matish III of Newport News pleaded guilty on Tuesday to viewing the illegal images. Authorities charged him and more than 100 others across the country with accessing child porn through the secret website Playpen.

Defense attorneys have challenged the cases because the FBI briefly took over Playpen and hacked into users’ computers to identify them. Legal arguments include the claim that the FBI went beyond its jurisdiction.

A federal judge issued a warrant in Virginia but the FBI hacked computers in other states.

Some federal judges have thrown out the evidence. But others have allowed cases to proceed, including the judge in Matish’s case.

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