State investigated Internet porn in legislative office before, OLS chief says

Office of Legislative Services (OLS) Executive Director Albert Porroni confirmed that his office had received a call from District 20 legislators about “salacious material” found on the office’s computer system long before pornographic images of minors were allegedly found on Neil Cohen’s legislative office computer.

Porroni said that he could not recall the exact time frame of the complaint, but sources tell PolitickerNJ.com that it was made approximately one year ago.

At least one pornographic web site was accessed from a District 20 legislative office computer, and State Sen. Raymond Lesniak and Assemblyman Joseph Cryan had suspected Cohen, sources say. The web site was not suspected of having child pornography, however.

Porroni said that members of the OLS’s data management branch went to the office to check up on the complaint, but could not establish who visited the Web site.

Visiting a pornographic Web site on a legislative office computer is not a criminal office, Porroni said, but does constitute misuse under legislative rules. If someone is found to have violated the rules, they are subject to “disciplinary action or termination of employment.”

The OLS’s data management unit reports its findings to the legislators who made the complaint, but it is up to the legislators to take further action – either notifying law enforcement, legislative leadership, ethics panels or dealing with it in-house. The OLS, however, could not implicate any specific person as accessing the site.

“We reported what we had to the members, and apparently it wasn’t enough to go forward with anything of the nature of this (current) investigation, which is criminal,” said Porroni. “And I assume that they tried to deal with it in-house.”

Cryan and Lesniak could not immediately be reached, but last night said they had been instructed not to elaborate any further on a written statement they released Thursday night.

State investigated Internet porn in legislative office before, OLS chief says