Boy Scouts Leader Sentenced To 33 Years In Prison For Pretending To Be Teenage Girl, Receiving Student’s Nude Photos

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Emma Henderson Contributor
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A former Boy Scouts Leader received a 33-year sentence Monday in a Boston federal court for child exploitation offenses, according to a press release from The Department of Justice (DOJ) Tuesday morning.

The release says that 25-year-old Matthew Murphy from Whitman, Massachusetts, was sentenced to 33 years in prison and 10 years of supervised release after numerous accounts of child exploitation. (RELATED: Boy Scouts Of America Reaches Historic $850 Million Settlement With Sexual Abuse Victims)

Law enforcement began the investigation against Murphy after learning that he posed as a teenage girl and used Snapchat to “extort nude photographs from a Massachusetts middle school boy,” according to the press release. In 2019, Murphy was charged with two counts of sexual exploitation of children, CBS Boston reported.

At the time, the criminal complaint stated that Murphy used the fake account in 2018 to communicate with approximately 386 Snapchat users, ranging in age from 12-17, according to CBS Boston.

After being held for the charges, Murphy pleaded guilty to five counts of sexual exploitation of children in January 2020, according to local newspaper, The Patriot Ledger. To entice his victims, Murphy would say he was a girl between the ages of 13 and 17, The Patriot Ledger reported. The original complaint says he would demand naked pictures from the minors and threaten to expose them if they did not comply, according to CBS Boston.

During the investigation, agents obtained portions of Murphey’s Snapchat account and uncovered evidence of similar extortion of dozens of minors local to the area, according to the DOJ. To sexually exploit the child victims, Murphy was using five separate Snapchat accounts where he victimized at least 15 children, according to court records.

Murphy admitted in an interview with federal agents that he “met one of the boys he was messaging through a local Boy Scouts event,” according to the criminal complaint, CBS Boston reported. The press release also stated that Murphy knew some of the children and their families through his connection to local Boy Scout troops. (RELATED: Law Firms Asking Boy Scouts To Name 200 Leaders Accused Of Sexual Abuse)

The Daily Caller reported in November of 2020 that the organization was facing more than 82,000 claims of sexual abuse allegations against various scout leaders within the organization. In July 2021, the organization reached an $850 million settlement with tens of thousands of sexual abuse victims who said they were abused while participating in the program.