August 14, 2013 at 12:38 PM
A Sussex County man has admitted luring a teenage boy to Pennsylvania for sex, as well as downloading and receiving child pornography on his home computer, according to an announcement made today by U.S. Attorney Paul J. Fishman.
Robert Mucha, 57, of Newton, pleaded guilty before U.S. District Judge William H. Walls in Newark federal court to one count of enticing a minor to engage in criminal sexual activity and one count of receiving child pornography.
Mucha was arrested in his home on July 26, 2012. He was charged at the time with a single count of possessing child pornography and has been detained by law enforcement since then.
According to documents filed and statements made in court:
In October 2010, Mucha convinced a teenage boy to travel from New Jersey to Pennsylvania to spend the day with him and then sleep over at Mucha’s apartment in Stroudsberg, Pa. After he was arrested in July 2012, Mucha admitted to sexual contact with the teenager.
Prior to his arrest, Mucha worked as a volunteer Emergency Medical Technician in Andover. He also previously taught band and Bugle Corps to teenagers in Belleville and Lakewood.
The count of enticing a minor to engage in criminal sexual activity to which Mucha pleaded guilty is punishable by a minimum potential penalty of 10 years in prison and a maximum of life in prison and a $250,000 fine. Sentencing is currently scheduled for Nov. 19, 2013.
Today’s guilty plea is part of Operation Holitna, an ongoing HSI-led investigation that originated in Boston. U.S. Attorney Fishman credited special agents of the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s Homeland Security Investigations (HSI), under the direction of Special Agent in Charge Andrew M. McLees in Newark, with the investigation leading to today’s guilty plea. He also thanked the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Massachusetts and the HSI Boston office.
HSI encourages the public to report suspected child predators and any suspicious activity through its toll-free hotline at 1-866-347-2423 or its online tip form at http://www.ice.gov/tips.
Both are staffed around the clock by investigators. Suspected child sexual exploitation or missing children may be reported to the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children at 1-800-843-5678 or http://www.cybertipline.com.
The government is represented by Assistant U.S. Attorney Andrew J. Bruck of the U.S. Attorney’s Office Criminal Division in Newark.