Chicago – Attorney General Kwame Raoul today charged two Paris, Illinois men with the alleged possession of child pornography. The case is part of Raoul’s ongoing work, in collaboration with federal law enforcement agencies and local law enforcement officials throughout Illinois, to apprehend offenders who download and trade pornography online.
Raoul’s office charged Robert E. Porter, 47, with six counts of possession of child pornography, Class 2 felonies, punishable by up to 28 years in prison. His bond was set at $500,000. Raoul’s office also charged Toby T. Porter, 38, with three counts of possession of child pornography, Class 2 felonies, punishable by up to 28 years in prison. His bond was set at $300,000. Their next court date is Sept. 11.
“Possessing child pornography is a heinous crime that can leave life-long scars on children and their families. Those responsible for downloading or sharing this disturbing content must be held accountable,” Raoul said. “My office’s Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force is committed to continued collaborations with the Edgar County Sheriff’s Department and the Edgar County state’s attorney to keep our communities safe.”
Raoul’s investigators, with the assistance of the Edgar County Sheriff’s Department, conducted a search of the brother’s residence in the 5200 block of North 625th Street in Paris on Thursday, Aug. 24. Robert and Toby were then arrested and taken into custody at the Edgar County Jail, where they currently remain.
Attorney General Raoul’s office will co-prosecute the case with Edgar County State’s Attorney Timothy Gilbert.
"The Edgar County State's Attorney's Office is pleased to work in conjunction with the Attorney General's Office in the pursuit of justice in these matters," Gilbert said.
The public is reminded the defendants are presumed innocent until proven guilty in a court of law.
The case is part of Attorney General Raoul’s work to investigate and prosecute child pornographers in Illinois. Raoul’s office, with a grant from the U.S. Department of Justice, runs the Illinois Internet Crimes Against Children (ICAC) Task Force that investigates child exploitation crimes and trains law enforcement agencies. The task force receives CyberTips, or online reports of child pornography, from the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children. Over the last several years, CyberTipline reports have steadily increased. In 2022, reports to the ICAC increased by 26% over 2021.
Illinois’ ICAC Task Force is one of 61 ICAC task forces throughout the country and is comprised of a network of more than 175 local, county, state and federal law enforcement agencies. Since 2019, the Attorney General’s ICAC Task Force has received more than 32,500 CyberTips and has been involved in more than 485 arrests of sexual predators. Since 2006, the Attorney General’s ICAC Task Force has been involved in more than 1,960 arrests of sexual predators. The task force also has provided internet safety training and education to more than 1 million parents, teachers and students, in addition to more than 23,850 law enforcement professionals.
Attorney General Raoul also reminded the public that online child sexual exploitation can be reported at www.cybertipline.com, and child abuse can be reported at dcfsonlinereporting.dcfs.illinois.gov. In addition, local child advocacy centers can be found at www.childrensadvocacycentersofillinois.org.
Assistant Attorneys General Katherine C. Hegarty is prosecuting the case for Raoul’s High Tech Crimes Bureau.