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Illinois man cleared of child porn charges after it was discovered he unintentionally downloaded it

Three years after being arraigned on child pornography charges, 40-year-old electrical engineer Wocjciech Florczykowski was acquitted by a Cook County, Illinois, judge, reports the Daily Herald.

Florczykowski’s nightmare began in August 2011, when he downloaded World War II material to his work laptop. According to Florczykowski, he has an interest in battlefield memorabilia, so much so that he occasionally heads to Poland in the hopes of finding everything from medals to grenades in different battlefields.

He was researching explosives through the use of uTorrent when he inadvertently downloaded child pornography. “What I discovered was completely disgusting,” said Florczykowski. “I was not looking for this stuff.” He moved the material to a folder he intended to delete, but before he could do so, he was fired from his job at DLS Electronic Systems.

Related: Google spots child porn in man’s Gmail account, tips off police

Shortly after the company discovered the files, it contacted the FBI, which made its way to Florczykowski’s home. “The FBI descended on his home,” said Lawrence Lykowski, Florczykowski’s lawyer. “They brought in bomb-sniffing dogs and an explosives team because the search terms were suspected of indicating possible terrorist activity.

All throughout the investigation, Lykowski said, Florczykowski cooperated with authorities, resulting in no federal charges against him.

Florczykowski testified that he had no intention of downloading child pornography, with computer experts on both sides agreeing with him. The Regional Computer Forensics Laboratory in Chicago found no evidence of Florczykowski searching for child pornography in everything from databases to websites, testified prosecution expert Mike Theis.

Related: Microsoft and Google make it harder to find child porn online

Because of this, Cook County judge Thomas Fecarotta found Florczykowski not guilty. “There was no evidence to suggest the defendant intended to possess child pornography,” said Judge Fecarotta. If the judge swung the other way, Florczykowski could have gone to jail for seven years and have to register as a sex offender for the rest of his life.

“If anything is learned in this case, it’s beware of what you download,” said Lykowski. Very wise words.