The Margaret Chase Smith Federal Building

A New Jersey man who was caught at the border returning from a vacation in Canada with child pornography on his computer was sentenced Tuesday in U.S. District Court in Bangor to 10 years in federal prison.

Newell Mowry, 66, of Butler, New Jersey, faced between 10 and 20 years in federal prison due to a 1999 conviction in New York for possession of child pornography.

Then, he possessed VCR tapes of child pornography in a purported attempt to discover if his son’s abuse had been recorded by his ex-wife’s boyfriend. In that case, Mowry was sentenced to five years of probation.

If not for his prior conviction, Mowry would have faced between five years and 10 months, and seven years and four months in prison.

In addition to prison time, U.S. District Judge Nancy Torresen sentenced Mowry to a decade of supervised release and ordered him to pay $32,500 in restitution to four victims, whose sexual abuse by adults when they were children was filmed and distributed over the internet.

Mowry also was ordered to pay $5,000 to a fund established by the Justice for Victims of Trafficking Act of 2015. That law applies to child pornography, sex trafficking and other crimes to make it easier for victims to receive compensation for counseling and other services.

At least one other Maine defendant has been ordered to pay the $5,000 assessment, according to court documents. Matthew Miller, 52, of Windham is serving a three-year prison term at a federal corrections facility in Danbury, Connecticut, on a child pornography charge.

An emotional Mowry apologized on Tuesday to the victims in the more than 500 images of adults sexually abusing children that he had on his computer.

“I’m very, very sorry,” Mowry told the judge shortly before he was sentenced. “Nobody wants to wake up and be like me. … I have read the victim impact statements, and all I can say is, ‘Why didn’t anybody help them?’

“I’m not saying the devil made me do it, but Satan is involved here,” he continued. “These images will haunt me the rest of my life.”

There was no evidence that Mowry ever sexually abused a child, Torresen said.

Mowry told the judge that he would use his pension from Atlantic Aviation to pay restitution.

He came to the attention of officers at the border in October because he did not have his passport, according to court documents. When he was referred for a secondary inspection, his prior conviction was discovered. Due to his record, his computer was searched, and the child pornography was found.

Mowry waived indictment and pleaded guilty to the charge in March. He has been held without bail since then. That time will count toward his sentence.

Mowrey requested and the judge recommended that he be sent to a facility where he may receive treatment for the sexual trauma he suffered while in the military and his interest in child porngraphy.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Chris Ruge, who prosecuted the case, and defense attorney Robert Schwartz of Morristown, New Jersey, jointly recommended the 10-year sentence.

If you or someone you know needs resources or support related to sexual violence, contact the Maine Coalition Against Sexual Assault’s 24/7 hotline at 1-800-871-7741.

Follow the Bangor Daily News on Facebook for the latest Maine news.