The United States Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of Florida has announced that a man from Madison, Alabama, has pleaded guilty to his involvement in operating a website that promoted and distributed explicit images and videos of child se*xual abuse.
William Michael Spearman, 57 years old, could face a mandatory minimum sentence of 20 years in prison and a maximum sentence of life imprisonment if convicted.
According to court documents referenced by the USAO, the website had been active for numerous years, with Spearman serving as its main administrator. The website featured sections dedicated to the se*xual abuse of infants and toddlers, depictions of children enduring pain and torture, and guidance on evading detection by law enforcement.
Spearman managed a team responsible for the website, overseeing its operations, maintaining records of child pornography files advertised and distributed through the site, conducting staff meetings, and engaging in other related activities. In November 2022, he was arrested during an FBI raid in Madison, Alabama, with assistance from the Madison Police Department, as reported by WHNT.
The investigations were conducted by the FBI’s Child Exploitation Operational Unit, West Palm Beach Resident Agency, and Miami Field Office, with support from various FBI field offices and resident agencies in Alabama, Nevada, Tennessee, North Carolina, and Wisconsin.
In addition to Spearman, four other individuals involved with the website were convicted in the Southern District of Florida. Selwyn David Rothenstein of Boynton Beach, Florida, received a 28-year prison sentence and was ordered to pay $85,000 in restitution to victims. Rothenstein faced charges of conspiracy to advertise child pornography, five counts of advertising child pornography, and possession of child pornography.
Gregory Malcolm Good of Silver Spring, Maryland; Robert Preston Boyles of Clarksville, Tennessee; and Matthew Branden Garrell of Raleigh, North Carolina, were charged with conspiracy to advertise child pornography and conspiracy to distribute child pornography. The sentencing dates for Good, Boyles, and Garrell are scheduled for August 22, August 15, and August 1, respectively.
Spearman pleaded guilty to participating in a child exploitation enterprise and is set to be sentenced on August 31. WHNT has provided coverage of William Spearman’s arrest in November 2022 in Madison, Alabama, which can be watched below.