Former Glee actor Mark Salling pleads guilty to child pornography charges; faces up to seven years in jail

FP Staff

Oct,05 2017 09:40 01 IST

Former Glee actor Mark Salling, who played the bad-boy Noah 'Puck' Puckerman on the popular fox musical dramedy, has reached a deal with prosecutors to plead guilty to possession of child pornography.

Mark Salling. Image from Twitter/@wtvrgabs.

Mark Salling. Image from Twitter/@wtvrgabs.

The plea agreement filed Tuesday with the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California in Los Angeles states that the actor is admitting he possessed images of prepubescent children. The agreement also states that a search warrant was put into place and more than 50,000 images (25,000 still photographs, 29,000 pictures of child erotica and 600 videos of child pornography) along with a USB flash drive, were found on Salling's computer.

Prosecutors and Salling have agreed to ask a judge to sentence the actor to a prison term between four to seven years. He will also be required to register as a sex offender, pay $50,000 to each victim that is seeking restitution and has to abide by restrictions on where he can live.

Additionally, Salling will also reportedly participate in counseling or psychiatric treatment and is not allowed to have any form of communication with any person under the age of 18 unless the legal guardian is present or has been notified beforehand of Salling's conviction (this requirement is not inclusive of cashiers, waiters or any type of vendors that he may encounter in public), according to the Hollywood Reporter. The actor is also required to stay at least 100ft away from public playgrounds, schoolyards, parks and other children's facilities.

The charges against the star were first brought up in 2015 and a subsequent search was executed on 26 December the same year. In May, 2016, the actor was indicted on two counts of child pornography, and was charged with receiving and possessing child porn. After that the case was referred to federal authorities, and Salling went on to plead not guilty in June, 2016.

Prosecutors are recommending a jail sentence of 48 to 84 months under the plea agreement, followed up by 20 years of supervised release, and the fine that the actor has to pay additionally will be determined by the court.

(With inputs from AP)