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Former Minn. GOP staffer convicted on child porn charges

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A Ramsey County judge has convicted Rory Koch, a former Republican legislative staffer, of 12 felony counts of possessing child pornography, the Star Tribune reported.

Rory Koch, 40, says he is innocent of the charges, and he and his lawyer plan to challenge the conviction, as well as Minnesota's child-pornography law, in the Minnesota Court of Appeals, the Star Tribune reported.

County District Judge Edward Wilson issued the ruling Monday after the St. Paul man waived his right to jury trial, the newspaper said. He is scheduled to be sentenced April 8, the Pioneer Press reported.

Koch was an administrator with the state House Republican Caucus when he was charged in March last year with possessing child pornography. His lawyer has said he plans to argue on appeal that Koch viewed, but did not possess, child pornography on his computer, the Star Tribune reported.

Investigators found 12 explicit child porn images on Koch’s computer that were identified as depicting known child victims of child porn, WCCO reported.

Koch's defense has also argued that the evidence used by in the 2010 issuing of a search warrant for Koch's Grand Avenue apartment was too "stale," the Pioneer Press reported.

Koch ran unsuccessfully for Ramsey County Board while he was being investigated but the investigation was not public knowledge at the time, the Star Tribune noted.

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