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Topeka man pleads guilty to cyberstalking, child pornography charges

NEWS RELEASE FROM U.S. ATTORNEY STEPHEN MCALLISTER

A Topeka man pleaded guilty Tuesday to cyberstalking and distributing child pornography.

35-year-old Blake Adam Austin pleaded guilty to one count of cyberstalking, one count of possessing child pornography and one count of distributing child pornography.

The investigation began when a middle school teacher in Topeka reported receiving emails from males who wanted to meet her.  The males were responding to a Craigslist ad in which someone used the victim’s identity to post sexual content.  The problem continued for years until an investigator identified an account Austin was using to post sexual content along with the victim’s contact information.

The victim recognized Austin as someone she had worked with at a coffee shop.  He had attempted to initiate a relationship but she had not been interested.

Investigators learned Austin used images of an adult porn star and the victim’s contact information to post ads.  He also used images of the victim and her contact information to place half a dozen ads on Craigslist.

On Austin’s laptop, investigators found images of him having sex with a 17-year-old girl.  Investigators also learned that Austin uploaded sexually explicit photos of a girl under 15 years old on Skype.

Sentencing is set for August 20th.  He faces a penalty of up to five years in federal prison on the cyberstalking charge, up to 10 years on the possession charge and not less than five years on the distribution charge.

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