January 17, 2013

Judge postpones hearing for ex-fugitive Cameron

By Betty Adams badams@centralmaine.com
Staff Writer

A federal judge has agreed to postpone a Feb. 5 court date for the state’s former top drug prosecutor who fled the state after a court upheld most of his convictions on child pornography charges.

click image to enlarge

James Cameron

Contributed photo

This means James Cameron, 50, of Rome will be in court in Portland Feb. 19 to address the criminal contempt charge. He is expected to plead guilty to that charge, according to pleadings by his defense attorney, David Beneman.

Chief U.S. District Judge John A. Woodcock Jr. filed the order agreeing to the delay today.

Cameron, who is being held in New Hampshire while the contempt charge is pending, was sentenced  in March 2011 to 16 years in prison after being convicted of 13 charges of possessing and transmitting child pornography.

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the First Circuit, in a decision issued Nov. 14, 2012, reversed convictions on six counts and sent the case back for resentencing on the remaining seven counts or a new trial.

Cameron, who had been free on bail while the appeal was pending, disappeared from the state and was arrested 17 days later in Albuquerque, N.M.

Woodcock said in Thursday’s order that Cameron’s resentencing would be scheduled once the contempt charge was resolved.

The contempt charge carries a maximum penalty of up to 10 years in prison consecutive to the underlying offense.

Six of Cameron’s child pornography convictions for transportation and receipt of child pornography carry minimum prison terms of five years and maximum terms of 20 years. The conviction for possession of child pornography carries a maximum term of 10 years, but no minimum.

Cameron became the target of an investigation after the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children reported Yahoo! had found multiple images of child pornography in a Yahoo! account.

According to the court documents, a search warrant executed on Dec. 21, 2007, found child pornography images on a computer in his home in Hallowell.

He was fired from the Office of the Maine Attorney General in April 2008 after 18 years as an assistant attorney general. He was indicted on the child pornography charges on Feb. 11, 2009.

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