A Carbon County man has been sentenced to 10 years in a federal prison after admitting to downloading and sharing images of child pornography.

The U.S. Attorney's office for the Middle District said Eugene F. Hartzell, of Nesquehoning, was sentenced Monday by Senior Judge Edwin M. Kosik, in Scranton. Hartzell had pleaded guilty to receiving and distributing child pornography. He admitted to committing the crime during March through September 2010.

Hartzell was indicted by a federal grand jury on Nov. 16, 2010, as a result of an investigation by the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), including offices in Rochester, N.Y., and Scranton.

Kosik also ordered that Hartzell serve 10 years of supervised release following his prison sentence, and pay a special assessment of $100. Hartzell must also submit to sex offender treatment programs while in prison and comply with sex offender registration requirements when he is released from prison.

U.S. Attorney Peter J. Smith noted that the case was brought as part of Project Safe Childhood, a nationwide initiative to combat the growing epidemic of child sexual exploitation and abuse launched in May 2006 by the Department of Justice. Led by the U.S. Attorney's Office and the Criminal Division's Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section, Project Safe Childhood marshals federal, state and local resources to better locate, apprehend and prosecute individuals who exploit children via the Internet, as well as to identify and rescue victims.

For more information about Project Safe Childhood, visit www.projectsafechildhood.gov [1].

The case was prosecuted by U.S. Attorney Francis P. Sempa.