Restrictions Lifted on Maine Man Arrested for Explicit 'Anime'

posted on by Egan Loo
Police: man can be charged under federal law if state does not file charges

On Thursday, a Superior Court justice in Maine dismissed all bond restrictions on a man who was arrested last month, but not formally arraigned, for possession of "anime" depicting children in sexual situations.

State police arrested Joseph Audette, a 30-year-old computer network administrator for the Deer Isle and Stonington school system on Deer Island, at his home in Surry, Hancock County on October 3. The police's Computer Crimes Unit had linked him to a screen name used on sites that contain child pornography, and a search of his home computer allegedly found sexually explicit images. Audette resigned from his administrator position on the day after the arrest.

Mike McFadden, a special agent with the state police, said that "local kids" were not depicted in Audette's files; instead, his computer had "anime" depicting children in sexual situations. McFadden noted that if Maine's ongoing investigation against Audette does not lead to a formal arraignment on charges, the federal government can step in. According to McFadden, the images are illegal under federal law, but not under Maine law. He said that the investigators were disturbed by what they found and added, "None of us would be here if we were talking about a couple of images."

The state did not file a formal complaint against Audette, so the bond restrictions that were imposed on him were dismissed on Thursday. Before the dismissal, Audette was previously restricted from contact with children, all Internet access, and later just Internet access to sexually explicit materials.

Source: Bangor Daily News (link 2)

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