Newark man facing child porn charges also hid cameras in business dressing room, feds say

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NEWARK, N.Y. (WROC) — A former faculty member of Newark High School, who was also previously employed at the YMCA in Canandaigua, has been arrested and charged with production, receipt, and possession of child pornography, and online enticement of a minor, according to federal officials.

The charges against 28-year-old Matthew Holland carry a minimum penalty of 15 years in prison, a maximum penalty of life, and a $250,000 fine, U.S. Attorney James Kennedy said in a press release Monday.

According to the criminal complaint, Holland told investigators he operated Illumination Images on W. Union Street in Newark, NY, where he had hidden cameras in the dressing room, in order to record customers, including minors, in various stages of undress. 

Kennedy’s office says “Following the execution of search warrant, Holland was arrested and extradited to Leesburg, VA, to face a state charges in that jurisdiction. The defendant made an initial appearance on the federal charges in United States District Court, Eastern District of Virginia, and is being held without bail, until he is transported to the Western District of New York, where the prosecution will be handled by Assistant U.S. Attorney Kyle P. Rossi.”

Federal officials are asking anyone with information concerning Matthew Holland, Illumination Images, or Snapchat User “Tjohnson755,” is asked to contact Homeland Security Investigations at (716) 464-6070 or via email at hsibuffalotips@ice.dhs.gov.

From the U.S. Attorney’s Office:

“According to the complaint, on March 9, 2020, investigators with the Loudoun County Sheriff’s Office in Leesburg Virginia, received a report that Snapchat user “Tjohnson755”had engaged in sexually explicit conversations with a 14 year old minor. The complaint states that “Tjohnson755,”later identified as Matthew Holland,coerced the minor into sending him nude photographs. When the minor indicated that she did not wish to continue communicating, the defendant threatened to disseminate the minor’s photographs over the internet. Using this and other threats, Holland coerced the minor to continue to send him sexually explicit photographs and videos.

Loudoun County Sheriff’s Office detectives executed a search warrant on Holland’s “Tjohnson755” Snapchat account, and using IP information, located the defendant’s residence in Newark, NY. While analyzing the Snapchat account, investigators identified dozens of similar conversations with other suspected minors.”

“As an educator and photographer, the defendant not only had access to children but occupied a position of trust with respect to them,” stated U.S. Attorney Kennedy in a press release. “However, as reflected in the allegations set forth in the criminal complaint, his cruel and unrelenting betrayal of that trust is every parent’s nightmare. This case serves as a sobering reminder that we must remain vigilant in our effort to educate our children to the dangers they face and to pay attention to their online activities. Too often children lack the real world experience needed to discern the dangers lurking in the virtual world.”   

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