Schuette: Sterling Heights Man Sentenced to up to Seven Years in Jail for Possession of Child Pornography

Contact: Andrea Bitely, Megan Hawthorne 517-373-8060
Agency: Attorney General

September 26, 2017

LANSING – Michigan Attorney General Bill Schuette today announced that John Cafarelli, 54, of Sterling Heights, was sentenced to 23 months to seven years in jail for the possession of child pornography. Cafarelli will also be required to register as a sex offender for 25 years. 

Cafarelli was found guilty by a jury in July 2017 of 10 felony counts of Possession of Child Sexually Abusive Materials (CSAM), one count of Distribution of Child Sexually Abusive Materials, and one count of Using a Computer to Commit a Crime.

 “This case proves that those who choose to victimize innocent children will be held accountable for their crimes,” said Schuette. “While it cannot undo what has been done, this sentencing means another child predator is off the streets.”

Cafarelli originally pleaded guilty in October 2016 but at the time of sentencing in November 2016 he stated he was innocent and was allowed to withdraw the original plea. The case was then sent to trial leading to this guilty verdict on Thursday, July 6, 2017.

Case Background

In 2014 an undercover investigation by the Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force (ICAC) into the internet sharing of child pornography pointed to an IP address that belonged to Cafarelli. A search warrant was first issued for the owner of the IP address. It was determined that it belonged to Cafarelli, at which point a search warrant of his home was issued. When the search warrant was executed Cafarelli answered the door partially clothed and child pornography was actively running on his computer.  As a result of the warrant a desktop computer was seized from Cafarelli’s bedroom. Upon forensic review, numerous images of child sexually abusive materials were found on Cafarelli’s personal computer.  As that computer was determined to be solely used by Cafarelli, he was charged with possession of child sexually abusive materials.

Michigan Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force

The ICAC Task Force is comprised of more than 50 state, local and federal law enforcement agencies and investigates offenders who use computers and the internet to sexually exploit children.

Cafarelli mug shot

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