May 9, 2013
For Immediate Release
Contact: Tim Connolly (508) 368-7236 or Paul Jarvey (508) 368-7241
WORCESTER — State Police Detectives assigned to the Worcester County District Attorney’s office played an important role in the early stages of an international child pornography investigation that has led to the rescue of 160 children and the arrest of 51 perpetrators.
“This case came together in 2010 with an investigation and subsequent arrest of Robert Diduca of Milford by State Police Detectives assigned to the Worcester County District Attorney’s Office,” said District Attorney Joseph D. Early Jr., who praised the efforts of the State Police Detectives, Assistant District Attorney Cheryl Riddle, Milford Police and federal authorities.
“I believe the State Police Detectives, including Troopers John Conron, Patrick McStay, Shawn Murphy and Jeff Perry, who had special training in computer forensics, played an important role, working with our prosecutors and federal agents, in bringing Mr. Diduca to justice and starting the ball rolling in the wide-ranging investigation that followed,” Mr. Early said.
The case was moved from state court to federal court as jurisdiction was transferred to the U.S. Attorney’s Office. Mr. Diduca pleaded guilty to the production, distribution and possession of child pornography last year in U.S. District Court. He was sentenced to 18 years in prison.
A forensic analysis of Mr. Diduca’s computers, was conducted by State Police Detectives assigned to the District Attorney’s office, Detectives from the State Police Digital Evidence Multimedia Section and federal agents. The investigators found evidence that linked Mr. Diduca to offenders and victims in the U.S., Canada, Mexico and Europe.
Iinvestigators traced a striped sweater worn by one of the young victims to a small specialty shop in the Netherlands. That discovery helped police to identify the victim and locate more perpetrators.
One of the 51 offenders was Geoffrey Portway of Worcester who was arrested last July by federal agents along with State Police Detectives assigned to the District Attorney’s Office and Worcester Police. He pleaded guilty this week to solicitation to commit a crime of violence (kidnapping a child) and distribution and possession of child pornography.
He will be sentenced in August and faces 28 years in prison and then deportation to England.