A Bayonne man was among 40 arrested, at least one from every county in New Jersey, in a massive child pornography sting known as “Operation Statewide.”
By John Heinis/Hudson County View
Antonio DeLapa, 68, of Bayonne, was arrested on July 18 and charged with both distribution and possession of child pornography, according to the state Attorney General’s Office.
Enrique Estremadoyro Vergara, 34, of Harrison was also hit with the same charges and was arrested on June 6.
The six-month investigation was an effort coordinated by the New Jersey Regional Internet Crimes Against Children (ICAC) Task Force.
Of the 40 arrested, 37 have been charged with distribution and possession of child pornography. A number of seized computers each had more than 1,000 juvenile pornographic images and videos stored on them and one had more than 76,000 files, authorities said.
The Operation Statewide law enforcement team, led by New Jersey State Police detectives, followed the digital fingerprint of known images of child porn as they were being sent and received over file sharing networks to specific computers, officials said.
According to the AG’s Office, internet addresses were then traced to street addresses and detectives from partnering agencies knocked on the doors of many surprised defendants, one of whom was in the process of downloading child porn images.
“These offenders, by their actions, contribute in a very real and direct way to the cruel exploitation of innocent children, and that is why we remain tireless in our efforts to protect children by locking up these criminals,” said Attorney General Chris Porrino in a statement.
“The message that Operation Statewide delivers to these offenders is clear: It doesn’t matter where you live or whether you think you can hide your crimes by viewing these vile images in the dark seclusion of your home, we’re monitoring you on the Internet, and we will track you down and arrest you.”