NJ priest claims he uploaded child porn to get back at God

A prison-bound New Jersey priest contests he only uploaded child pornography to his computer to get back at God, who'd been making him lose at poker.

Father Kevin Gugliotta will serve 11½ to 23½ months in prison and must register as a sex offender, according to reports.

The priest, who previously worked in the Archdiocese of Newark, was busted last year when police found child porn on his computer at his Gouldsboro, Pa., apartment last year.

Investigators found the 55-year-old priest uploaded the illegal material several times between July 9 and Aug. 29, 2016, the Pocono Record reports.

The disgraced cleric was hit with 20 counts of child porn and another 20 of disseminating images of children involved in sexual acts.

In March he pleaded guilty to a single disseminating images charge in a deal that saw the other 39 charges dropped.

But before he was sentenced Thursday, Gugliotta told probation officers the child porn merely stemmed from his high-stakes poker problem.

Gugliotta had a losing poker streak going, and he believed it was God attacking him, local ABC affiliate WNEP reports.

So he uploaded the child pornography as revenge.

"That was his reason," defense lawyer Jim Swetz told WNEP. "He's not happy that's how he felt, as the judge indicated. There are other ways to handle issues and handle anger."

Prosecutors seemed to think the same thing.

"No matter what he says why he did it, he still admits he did it and that's the important thing as a prosecutor," Wayne County District Attorney Janine Edwards told local news channel WBRE.

Some of his fellow priests from Newark came to the sentencing to show their support — only to be surprised when Gugliotta's poker problem was revealed.

"That was a surprising thing in the court, for sure," Father Gabriel Costa told WNEP. "People do things under stress they wouldn't normally do."

Gugliotta, who's already spent 10 months in jail, has been stripped of his priest duties in New Jersey, and the archdiocese is mulling whether he'll return as a priest, according to the news channel.

Because of the time already served, he can be released within a month from the sentencing.

Gugliotta will be on five years probation when he is let go, WBRE reports, and will be barred from coming into contact with children — or gambling.

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