Ocean County Prosecutor Bradley D. Billhimer announced that on May 15, 2023, Matthew Robles, 32, of Lakewood, pled guilty before the Honorable Guy P. Ryan, P.J.Cr.P., to Distribution of Child Pornography and Failure to Register as a Megan’s Law Offender. At the time of his sentencing the State will be recommending a term of seven years New Jersey State Prison (NJSP) with a five year period of parole ineligibility, as to the Child Pornography Distribution charge. The State will also be recommending a term of three years in NJSP, as to the Failure to Register as a Megan’s Law Offender charge. The sentences would run concurrently.
An investigation by the Ocean County Prosecutor’s Office Megan’s Law Unit revealed that Robles – a Megan’s Law Registrant under the supervision of the New Jersey Division of Parole- has been employed at a local business establishment in Brick Township without registering or notifying any law enforcement agencies. Since 1994, Megan’s Law requires certain offenders to register with their local police departments whenever they move and/or change their residential address or place of employment.
On July 26, 2022, Officers from the Division of Parole conducted a home visit and discovered images of child pornography on Robles’ cellular phone. Robles was taken into custody and transported to the Ocean County Jail for various violations of his parole. All of Robles’ electronic devices were seized by law enforcement for forensic examination purposes.
On July 28, 2022, Detectives from the Ocean County Prosecutor’s Office High Tech Crime Unit executed a court authorized search warrant on Robles’ electronic devices. As a result, Detectives discovered that Robles had been uploading and sharing images of child pornography on the internet by way of the WhatsApp Application. On August 5, 2022, Robles was served with a complaint initially charging him with Failure to Register as a Sex Offender. On August 8, 2022, Robles was served with the complaint in connection with the Distribution of Child Pornography charge. Robles is currently lodged in NJSP as a result of the parole violation in connection with these charges. He will remain detained until his sentencing.
Prosecutor Billhimer acknowledges the diligent efforts of Senior Assistant Prosecutor Shanon Chant-Berry and Assistant Prosecutor Natalie Pouch who are handling the case on behalf of the State, and commends the Ocean County Prosecutor’s Office Megan’s Law Unit, Ocean County Prosecutor’s Office High Tech Crime Unit, New Jersey Division of Parole, and Lakewood Township Police Department, for their collaborative assistance in connection with this investigation leading to Robles’ arrest, guilty pleas and soon his state prison sentence.