Atlantic County Superior Court, Mays Landing

Atlantic County Superior Court, Mays Landing

MAYS LANDING — A Buena Vista Township man was sentenced to five years in prison Friday for distributing child pornography online.

Craig C. Covell, 55, will be ineligible for parole for 2½ years, will be required to register as a sex offender under Megan’s Law and will be under parole supervision for life, state Attorney General Gurbir S. Grewal said in a news release. He was sentenced by Atlantic County Superior Court Judge Donna M. Taylor.

Covell’s lawyer, Melissa Rosenblum, did not respond to a request for comment.

“By sharing child pornography online, this defendant participated in a criminal network that promotes and perpetuates the brutal sexual exploitation of children,” Grewal said.

Covell pleaded guilty July 11 to second-degree distribution of child pornography and storing or maintaining child pornography in a file-sharing program, according to the release. He admitted to knowingly using file-sharing software to make multiple files of child pornography available for others to download from a folder on his computer.

Detectives from the State Police Digital Technology Investigations Unit, or DTIU, were monitoring an online file-sharing network popular with offenders who download and trade child pornography when they found a computer address that was sharing child porn, according to the release. They downloaded numerous videos of child porn shared from that IP address, which was traced to Covell’s home.

On Oct. 19, 2018, the DTIU executed a search warrant at the home with the New Jersey State Parole Board and representatives of several State Police units, according to the release. Detectives seized multiple computers and hard drives used by Covell in the basement.

Forensic examinations conducted at the Regional Computer Forensics Laboratory in Hamilton, Mercer County, revealed more than 100 videos and images of child pornography on those devices, according to the release.

“We know that the depraved who seek out and share this filth create the demand, which is why our pursuit of these offenders will remain unrelenting,” said Col. Patrick Callahan of the State Police. “We will continue to collaborate with our partners and utilize the most cutting-edge resources available to put these criminals behind bars.”

Contact: 609-272-7241

mbilinski@pressofac.com

Twitter @ACPressMollyB

Staff Writer

My beat is public safety, following police and crime. I started in January 2018 here at the Press covering Egg Harbor and Galloway townships. Before that, I worked at the Reading Eagle in Reading, Pa., covering crime and writing obituaries.

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