BRATTLEBORO -- A Brattleboro man who pleaded guilty to the possession of child pornography was sentenced May 13 to five years in prison.

According to a press release from the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Vermont, David "Gunner" Schnyer, 77, was also sentenced to five years of supervised release upon the completion of his prison term.

According to court documents, on Aug. 13, 2013, Schnyer was found to be in possession of more than 41,000 images and videos containing child pornography. He was apprehended when Special Agents with Homeland Security Investigations learned that that someone at his Birge Street residence was distributing child pornography using Ares, a type of file-sharing software.

The investigation was part of Operation Predator, a nationwide HSI initiative to protect children from sexual predators, including those who travel overseas for sex with minors, Internet child pornographers, criminal alien sex offenders and child sex traffickers. HSI encourages the public to report suspected child predators and any suspicious activity through its toll-free hotline at 1866-347-2423 or by completing its online tip form. Both are staffed around the clock by investigators. Suspected child sexual exploitation or missing children may be reported to the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children, an Operation Predator partner, via its toll-free 24-hour hotline, 1-800-843-5678.

HSI is a founding member and current chair of the Virtual Global Taskforce, an international alliance of law enforcement agencies and private industry sector partners working together to prevent and deter online child sexual abuse.