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Johnston Man, 23, Charged with Child Porn Possession and Transfer

Nicholas Pislowski, 23, of 72 Harding Ave., is among seven adults and one juvenile charged in "Operation Darknet" by the Rhode Island State Police.

Rhode Island State Police Lt. Col. Raymond Studley identified Nicholas Pislowski, 23, of 72 Harding Ave., Johnston, as one of eight suspects arrested on child pornography charges this morning during a press conference this afternoon.

The State Police Computer Crime Unit and Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force worked with the and several other departments to track down the suspects, Studley said.

Officers tracked downloads made by the suspects through peer-to-peer file sharing networks, Studley explained, and secured arrest warrants for their property and computers.

"For the predators out there, they need to know that we're out there," Studley said. "This clearly shows the prevalence of this behavior, and that we need to keep up this collaborative effort."

Studley said the suspects possessed images of children "from toddlers to pre-teen."

The other seven suspects charged with possession and transfer of child pornography were:

  • Lee Pollock, 45, of 248 Knotty Oak Dr., Coventry;
  • Mark Belanger, 42, of 35 Goff Ave., Pawtucket;
  • Luther Gorahkov, 25, of 23 Ray St., Providence;
  • Tiberi Simas, 37, of 233 Ohio Ave., Providence;
  • Michael Castaldi, 51, of 41 Sundance St., Warwick;
  • Joseph Cifelli, 71, of 134 Longview Dr., Warwick;
  • Nathan Dayon, 21, of 13 Fairview Ave., Westerly.

Studley said a juvenile was also arrested on possession and transfer charges.

Also arrested were two University of Rhode Island students:

Dylan Byrne, 18, a resident of Hutchinson Hall, on one count of possession of child pornography.

Steven Dasho, 19, also of Hutchinson Hall, on one count of possession of a controlled substance (psychedelic mushrooms).

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