By Paula Vargas
A man whose plea deal received national attention in 2012 was sentenced to nine years in federal prison Wednesday and a lifetime of supervision for receiving child pornography.
According to court records, police began investigating Timothy John Vanderweff in 2006. A call to police from his sister-in-law prompted an investigation involving Project Safe Childhood (PSC).
She told law enforcement that Vanderweff’s wife found thousands of images of child pornography on the defendant’s computer, as well as pictures of child pornography printed off the internet, said John Walsh, United States Attorney for the District of Colorado, in a statement released to media Wednesday.
The wife also believed the defendant had an improper infatuation with an 11-year-old neighbor.
With the information provided to police, a state authorized search warrant was executed and Vanderweff’s computer was seized.
Court records show more than 900 files of child pornography images including videos were discovered on the defendant’s computer hard drive.
When questioned by police, Vanderweff, 65, admitted “he liked to look at child pornography with images of children between the ages of eight and 11 years old,” according to court documents.
U.S. District judge John Kane rejected the defendant’s plea agreement in the summer of 2012 because Vanderweff had waived his right to appeal. Read more about that here.
“This case demonstrates the resources that law enforcement devotes to protecting children from exploitation,” Walsh said.
In August 2012 Vanderweff pleaded guilty to receiving child pornography. He also pleaded guilty in Rio Grande County Court on state charges of sexual assault of a child.
“The sentence handed down represents the FBI’s dedication to pursuing those intent on harming children,” said FBI Denver Special Agent in Charge Thomas Ravenelle.
“The identification and apprehension of child predators roaming our communities is a priority for the FBI, and this case should serve as a deterrent to those who utilize the Internet to promote the victimization of children.”