NEWARK, NJ — Acting Essex County Prosecutor Theodore N. Stephens, II, and West Orange Police Chief James Abbott announced today, Feb. 21, that Barry Eagel, 62, of West Orange has been charged with second and third degree endangering the welfare of a child for distributing and possessing items depicting the sexual abuse and exploitation of children.

Members of the Essex County Prosecutor’s Office Special Victims Unit, West Orange Police Department, the New Jersey State Police, and Homeland Security Investigations executed a search warrant at Eagel's West Orange home. Devices and digital storage media were seized from his home for forensic examination and analysis. 

Eagel was identified during an investigation initiated by the Essex County Prosecutor’s Office Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force into the distribution of images and videos depicting the sexual exploitation and abuse of children through file sharing networks. 

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Acting Prosecutor Stephens thanked ECPO Detective Thomas Chung, ECPO Supervisor/Assistant Prosecutor Deborah Freier, and other members of the office's Special Victims Unit for their work on this case, and expressed his appreciation for the ongoing assistance provided by the New Jersey State Police, the West Orange Police and Homeland Security on these important investigations.

These are accusations. All defendants are presumed innocent unless and until they enter a guilty plea or are found guilty beyond a reasonable doubt in a court of law. The investigation is active and ongoing.