A 29-year-old Arbutus man was charged today with five counts of distributing and nine counts of possessing child pornography, according to Maryland State Police.
Marcus Curtis Clark, of the 1000 block of South Beechfield Avenue between Wilkens Avenue and Leeds Avenue, had been under investigation by the Maryland Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force since April 2008, police said.
The task force’s assignment is to protect children from “computer-facilitated sexual exploitation,” according to police.
The investigation began after a trooper assigned to the task force discovered that someone on a computer connected to a peer-to-peer file-sharing network was offering pornographic videos of children for others to download, police said.
Troopers traced the computer to Clark, then obtained a warrant to search his home.
The warrant was executed last August, according to Sgt. Arthur Betts, a spokesman for the state police.
They confiscated multiple computers, hard drives and other media storage equipment, state police said.
State police forensic examiners recovered “dozens of videos and images of children engaged in various stages of sexual activity” from the confiscated items, police said.
Forensic investigators “have to carefully go in there and dissect the information and pull stuff out,” Betts said.
An arrest warrant was issued yesterday and police notified Clark.
Clark turned himself in to one of the computer crimes investigators early this morning, police said.
If convicted of all the charges, he could be sentenced to 70 years in prison and have to pay $150,000 in fines, police said.
Clark was taken before a District Court commissioner today, and was held on $50,000 bail pending his trial.