A 22-year-old Astoria man who works at a Manhattan day care center was arrested last week after he was alleged to have downloaded sexually explicit photographs of children between the ages of 4 and 16 through his AOL e-mail account, the Queens district attorney said.
Michael Dossantos, of 34-37 33rd St. in Astoria, was arraigned Dec. 15 before Queens Criminal Court Judge Toko Serita on 10 counts each of promoting and possessing a sexual performance by a child, Queens DA Richard Brown said.
The defendant, held on $15,000 cash or $30,000 bond, will return to court Jan. 19, the DA said. If convicted, he could face up to seven years in prison.
“Individuals who trade in child pornography on their computers can no longer expect to remain anonymous,” Brown said.
Federal law requires Internet service providers to report information to a cyber hotline of the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children in Virginia upon becoming aware of pornography that involves minors, the DA said. The center then reports this information to law enforcement officials.
In July, the city Police Department’s Computer Crimes Squad received a report that someone using the e-mail address BRAZIPAP102@aol.com had allegedly downloaded 10 photographs of children, who ranged in age from 4 to 16, engaging in sexual acts, Brown said.
Police allegedly found that the screen name BRAZIPAP102 and the e-mail address belonged to Dossantos.
On Dec. 15, police executed a search warrant at Dossantos’ apartment and removed computers and electronic equipment.
The defendant allegedly told law enforcement officials he had downloaded child pornography images with the intention of selling them for cash, the DA said. He is alleged to have told police he has been obtaining pornographic photos of children from the Internet for years, Brown said.
Dossantos is employed part-time by Manhattan Youth Recreation and Resources, Inc. in lower Manhattan.
Reach reporter Nathan Duke by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org or by phone at 718-229-0300, Ext. 156.
©2009 Community News Group
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