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Former BAE Systems employee to plead guilty to child porn charge

December 16th, 2007 12:00 am by Matthew Lane



GREENEVILLE — A former BAE Systems employee who attempted to print child porn images from his work computer has agreed to plead guilty to a federal child porn charge.


Michael Smith appeared in U.S. District Court in Greeneville earlier this month and agreed to plead guilty to a one-count information charging him with knowingly possessing a computer hard drive that contained child pornography images.


Smith faces a maximum 10 years in prison and a $250,000 fine when sentenced on Jan. 3.


According to the plea agreement, on Nov. 1, 2006, Smith, while at BAE Systems, attempted to print some child pornography images he had downloaded on his computer. Another BAE Systems employee discovered the photos on the company printer and advised management.


Court records state Smith accessed the Web sites where the child porn images were found on his work computer.


The FBI found more than 400 discrete images on Smith’s computer, with 188 confirmed to be child pornography. Many of those images were of prepubescent children.


Prosecutors say there is no evidence Smith was involved in distributing the images and has no evidence Smith engaged in a pattern of activity involving the sexual abuse or exploitation of a minor.


“Smith was utilizing the company-issued computer to download child pornography for his own personal, sexual gratification,” the plea agreement states.


U.S. District Judge J. Ronnie Greer filed a notice on Dec. 4 stating his intention for Smith to undergo a psychosexual evaluation in order to assist him with sentencing. Assistant U.S. Attorney Robert Reeves filed a response the next day saying such an evaluation would be appropriate.



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