A Loudoun County man has been sentenced to 15 years, 10 months in prison for the reproduction and possession of child pornography, according to the Office of the Attorney General.
John W. Bruce, Jr. — a resident of Aldie, according to Virginia Circuit Court documents — pleaded guilty to three counts of reproduction and 10 counts of possession of child pornography. He received his sentence from Circuit Court Judge Benjamin N.A. Kendrick.
In addition to prison time, Bruce will be fined $1,300 in restitution and will be required to register as a sex offender.
"With this strong sentence another dangerous predator is off our streets and out of our community," Attorney General Mark R. Herring (D) said in a prepared statement. "A 15-year sentence sends an important message that Virginia will not tolerate disgusting crimes like these. Individuals who exploit children and rob them of their innocence by producing and possessing child pornography will be brought to justice."
According to evidence presented in court, investigators with the Northern Virginia – D.C. Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force first noticed Bruce in 2017 using a peer-to-peer online network to trade child pornography.
Authorities executed a search warrant on Bruce's Aldie residence in search of child pornography-related evidence. They seized his computer and various digital storage devices.
A forensic examination of the confiscated material yielded hundreds of video and image files of child pornography featuring children as young as toddlers, many of whom have been previously identified as abuse victims by the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children.
The case was investigated by the Virginia State Police as part of the Northern Virginia – D.C. Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force. Assistant Attorney General Melissa Chong is prosecuting the case on behalf of the commonwealth with cooperation from the Loudoun County commonwealth attorney's office.