Montgomery Co. music teacher sentenced for child porn possession

A man who once taught music to kids from his home in Montgomery County, Maryland, was sentenced to more than four years in prison for possessing millions of pornographic images featuring children on his computer.

Charles Victor Kopfstein-Penk, 75, of Bethesda, pleaded guilty to federal charges of child pornography possession in February, and was sentenced Friday to 54 months in prison, followed by five years of supervised release.

He was also ordered to pay $144,000 in restitution to 35 victims.

Federal prosecutors said Kopfstein-Penk first caught the attention of Maryland State Police in March 2019. The police were investigating a file sharing network that was trafficking in child pornography.

Authorities detected an IP address linked with Kopfstein-Penk’s residence that was requesting large blocks of suspected child porn files. That May, police executed a search warrant at Kopfstein-Penk’s house.

The search turned up more than a million images and videos on his office computer and five external hard drives that were removed from the home and analyzed later.

While authorities were in his home, Kopfstein-Penk admitted using file-sharing software for some 10 years to download the material.

Prosecutors credited Project Safe Childhood, a U.S. Justice Department initiative started in 2006, for helping to uncover the crime. The project combats child exploitation and abuse.

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