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Mayfield brothers face porn counts (update)

Officials: Photos, video involve child

August 9, 2013
By MICHAEL ANICH , The Leader Herald

MAYFIELD - Two town brothers were charged Thursday by federal authorities with producing child pornography.

Richard Hastings, 21, and Robert Hastings, 18, produced child pornography involving a 7-year-old child, according to a news release from the U.S. Department of Justice.

According to complaints, between July 27 and 29, Richard Hastings produced sexually explicit photographs of the child and posted some of them on a website and emailed some to an undercover investigator with Queensland Police Services in Australia, the news release said.

Article Photos

A Homeland Security Investigation official talks on a cellphone at a home on Yates Road in Mayfield on Thursday. (Photo by
Bill Trojan/The Leader-Herald)

On Aug. 2, the news release said, Robert Hastings produced a sexually explicit video of the child, according to complaints.

Fulton County District Attorney Louise Sira said her office is working on a separate local investigation involving the case.

She said federal authorities raided the Yates Road home of the Hastings brothers.

Authorities would not say whether the child was at the residence at the time of the raid. Authorities declined to give the gender of the child.

The brothers, who live together, had their initial court appearances in Albany on Thursday before U.S. Magistrate Judge Randolph F. Treece, and both defendants were detained, the news release said. The two will have detention hearings today.

If found guilty of production of child pornography, each of the defendants would face a minimum of 15 years in prison and up to a maximum sentence of 30 years in prison, and a maximum fine of $250,000, the news release said.

The charges were announced by U.S. Attorney Richard S. Hartunian, Matthew Scarpino, resident agent in charge for Homeland Security Investigations, and Capt. Timothy Munro of state police Troop G, Bureau of Criminal Investigation.

The case is being investigated by Homeland Security Investigations and the state police. The case is being prosecuted by U.S. Attorney Sean O'Dowd.

"It was an execution of a federal warrant," Sira said of Thursday's raid. "State police assisted with the warrant. We have a dual investigation."

She said if other charges are brought locally against the Hastings brothers through her office's "companion investigation," the charges likely would be handled in Fulton County Court.

A state police spokesman in Loudonville this morning said that agency would have no comment because the U.S. Department of Homeland Security is the lead agency in this case.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Elizabeth C. Coombe said today she is the sole spokeswoman for the case. She declined to answer several questions about the case and said any new information probably would not be released for several days. She declined to release information about the child involved in the case.

Michael Anich covers Johnstown and Fulton County news. He can be reached at manich@leaderherald.com.

 
 

 

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