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Export man admits to ordering child porn in mail, $3K bounty on postal inspector

| Tuesday, Feb. 19, 2013, 3:57 p.m.

A Murrysville man admitted in federal court that he ordered child pornography through the mail and threatened the life of a postal inspector investigating the crime.

Todd Markley, 49, stood quietly in an Allegheny County Jail jumpsuit on Tuesday as Assistant U.S. Attorney Jessica Smolar read excerpts from an email that he sent the postal inspector. He claimed that he placed a $3,000 bounty on the female inspector's head and instructed a group of men “to make your death as painful, drawn out and humiliating as possible.”

Afterward, U.S. District Judge David Cercone asked Markley if he sent the email and did the other acts that Smolar described in her summary.

“Yes, your Honor,” Markley replied.

He pleaded guilty to possession of child pornography and threatening the life of a federal officer. He remains held without bail in the county jail.

His attorney, Richard Joyce, declined comment after the hearing. Cercone set Markley's sentencing for June 18.

The Postal Inspection Service targeted Markley in a sting developed from a customer database of a Los Angeles child pornography-distribution company that was raided in 2006, Smolar said. Inspectors in 2011 sent him an ad from a new company, and he ordered two hard-core child pornography catalogs, she said.

He sent a $54.95 check to buy a DVD titled “Curious Boys” and a preview reel containing clips from several other movies, Smolar said.

A search of Markley's home in April 2011 turned up two thumb drives with more than 600 images of child pornography, she said. Markley sent the threatening email about a month later.

Brian Bowling is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 412-325-4301 or bbowling@tribweb.com.

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