A South Portland man who served as a Cape Elizabeth fire official and public works employee has pled guilty in federal court in New Hampshire to possessing child pornography.

Ronald O’Brien, 38, was charged after a computer and 27 computer discs containing more than 600 sexually explicit images of children were seized from his home by authorities in August 2008.

A statement issued by Cape Elizabeth Town Manager Michael McGovern today said O’Brien was terminated on Tuesday because he is incarcerated and cannot report to work. The town became aware of the charges when one of O’Brien’s family members turned in his fire department radio and keys, said the statement.

O’Brien had served as a heavy equipment operator for the public works department since 2000 and has been captain of Engine 1 for several years, the statement said.

O’Brien faces up to 10 years in prison and a $250,000 fine. His sentencing is scheduled for July 5.
 


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