An Atlanta, GA, man admitted in U.S. District in Providence to exchanging child pornography with individuals across the country last last week, including sending images of child pornography to an undercover member of the Rhode Island States Police Internet Crimes Against Children (ICAC) Task Force.
Appearing before U.S. District Court Judge John J. McConnell, Jr., Joseph Grossman, 40, pleaded guilty to distribution of child pornography, announced United States Attorney Aaron L. Weisman, Superintendent of the Rhode Island State Police Colonel James M. Manni, and Homeland Security Investigations Special Agent in Charge Peter C. Fitzhugh.
According to court documents and information presented to the Court, on January 19, 2019, a member of the ICAC Task Force, a Rhode Island State Police detective, working in an undercover capacity, set up a profile on a social networking site targeting the “fetish and kinky” community. Grossman reached out to the detective and suggested they shared a sexual interest in young children. Grossman directed the detective to a website where they could chat privately. During a series of communications, Grossman sent the detective approximately 40 images of child pornography.
Investigators were able to determine an IP address and subscriber information associated with Grossman. On February 27, 2019, the Rhode Island State Police detective and an agent from Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) in Providence, assisted by HSI agents in Atlanta, executed a court-authorized search of Grossman’s Atlanta residence and seized several electronic devices and arrested Grossman. Grossman’s email and online accounts were reviewed. Investigators identified numerous people across the country with whom Grossman exchanged child pornography.
Grossman is scheduled to be sentenced on October 15, 2019.
Distributing child pornography is punishable by statutory penalties of 5-20 years in federal prison followed by 5 years to lifetime supervised release.
The case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Sandra R. Hebert.