Arizona Man Sentenced to More Than 18 Years in Prison on Child Pornography Charges

WASHINGTON (LAWFUEL) – An Arizona man was sentenced today to 220 months in prison after he was previously convicted on multiple child pornography charges, Acting Assistant Attorney General Matthew Friedrich of the Criminal Division and U.S. Attorney Diane J. Humetewa for the District of Arizona announced.

U.S. District Court Judge Mary H. Murguia for the District of Arizona also ordered that Paul Richard Butts, 39, be placed on lifetime supervised release following his release.

Butts was convicted in February 2008 for distributing and possessing child pornography following a four-day jury trial. At trial, the jury heard evidence that Butts used a peer-to-peer program, “iMesh,” to distribute child pornography to undercover FBI agents on Aug. 10, 2005. Peer-to-peer software programs permit computer users connected to the Internet to link computers around the world for the purpose of sharing files. A search warrant executed at Butts’ home on Oct. 6, 2005, led to the seizure of computers and numerous hard drives, external storage devices and computer discs containing child pornography. Computer forensic analysis performed on the seized materials revealed that Butts had more than 24,000 images of child pornography. After hearing testimony for four days, the jury found him guilty of the child-pornography distribution count, as well as 15 child pornography possession counts.

The case was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Sharon K. Sexton of the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Arizona and Trial Attorney James Silver of the Criminal Division’s Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section. The investigation was conducted by the FBI and involved cooperation among agents based in Arizona, Idaho and Wisconsin.

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