An Aroostook County man known as “Snake” who collected photos of infants being sexually molested pleaded guilty on Wednesday in U.S. District Court in Bangor to a charge of transporting or shipping child pornography.

Robert Kinney Jr., 41, of Blaine, changed his plea before Judge John A. Woodcock Jr. as part of a deal in which two other charges of receiving and possessing child pornography would be dismissed.

Kinney was first arrested at his home last Sept. 26 by Maine State Police, who were acting on a tip, Stephen McCausland, spokesman for the Maine Department of Public Safety, said at the time.

Members of the State Police Computer Crimes Unit arrested Kinney at home, where he lives with his wife and two children. They searched Kinney’s electronic devices and found the photos of infants being molested, McCausland said in a news release last year.

Kinney used an email account last Aug. 20 and 21 to transmit those images out of Maine, Assistant U.S. Attorney Chris Ruge said in a prosecution document filed with the court last month.

“Using this service, under the assumed name of ‘Snake,’ the defendant caused computer communications, containing pornographic images of children engaged in sexual activity, to be transmitted by wire and otherwise in interstate and foreign commerce. In the stated two-day period, the defendant sent no fewer than 9 videos and 15 images of child pornography using this method,” Ruge wrote.

Kinney remains in custody pending his sentencing date, which was not immediately available. He faces between five and 20 years in federal prison and a fine of as much as $250,000.

Scott Dolan can be reached at 791-6304 or at:

[email protected]

Twitter: @scottddolan

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