HAMILTON TOWNSHIP - Sixteen people, including a teacher and a school bus driver, are facing child pornography charges in New Jersey.  

They were arrested in a state and federal probe that targeted suspects using online file-sharing networks to distribute kiddie porn, including child rape videos.

Acting Attorney General Robert Lougy announced on Wednesday that all 16 defendants were charged with second-degree distribution of child pornography, which carries a sentence of five to 10 years in state prison, and third-degree possession of child pornography, which carries a sentence of three to five years in prison.  The arrests were made between Feb. 10 and March 31.

Lougy said investigators allegedly found more than 100 files of child pornography on a personal computer of Thomas Guzzi Jr., a fifth-grade teacher at the John H. Winslow Elementary School in Vineland. He also is charged with third-degree invasion of privacy for allegedly hiding a tablet computer in a bathroom stall at the Broadway Theatre of Pitman to record video of others using the toilet.

Agents also allegedly uncovered 27 files of child pornography from a shared folder on the personal computer of a bus driver for the Sparta School District.  Eugene Triston, 55, allegedly viewed child pornography on breaks between bus runs, which included driving elementary school children.

“These defendants come from all walks of life, but they allegedly share a depraved desire to see children being raped and sexually exploited,” said Acting Attorney General Lougy. “By viewing and distributing child pornography, particularly the child rape videos targeted in this operation, these offenders directly motivate and put themselves in league with the predators who torture children to create these repulsive materials.  Through sweeps like Operation Safeguard, we send a powerful message that these are very serious crimes and we are determined to put those who commit them behind bars.”

The 16 defendants range in age from 17 to 72.  All of them are charged under New Jersey’s strict 2013 child pornography law, which enhanced the penalties for those who possess, distribute or manufacture child pornography.