A Waterville man was sentenced in federal court Thursday for possessing child pornography, according to U.S. Attorney Halsey B. Frank.

William Stewart, 64, was sentenced to 80 months in prison and 10 years of supervised release after he pleaded guilty to the charges in April. Stewart will also have to pay $63,000 in restitution.

According to court records, in May and June of 2018, Stewart possessed thousands of images and hundreds of videos of child pornography that he received over the internet. Many of the videos and images depicted prepubescent children under 12 years old.

Law enforcement discovered the child pornography when they executed a search warrant on Stewart’s home on June 28, 2018.

During the sentencing, U.S. District Judge John A. Woodcock described the statements made by Stewart’s victims as “heartbreaking,” and said what Stewart had done was just “abhorrent.”

U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s Homeland Security Investigations, the Maine State Police Computer Crimes Unit and the Waterville Police Department investigated the case.

The prosecution of Stewart was part of a project that was launched in May 2006 called Project Safe Childhood. The project, led by the U.S. Attorney’s Offices and the Criminal Division’s Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section, works with U.S. Marshals Service, state and local resources to better locate, apprehend and prosecute people who exploit children and to identify and rescue victims.

More information on Project Safe Childhood is available at www.projectsafechildhood.gov.

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