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Former Maryland commerce executive, previously a Hogan aide, charged with sharing child pornography

Mathew Palmer, a former state Commerce Department executive who abruptly resigned in August, has been charged in federal court with distributing child pornography.

Using a private messaging app called Wickr, Palmer on Aug. 11 allegedly shared a 51-second clip of a man raping a young girl, according to charging documents filed last week. Palmer left his position as chief operating officer of the Maryland Department of Commerce the next day.

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Before transferring June 3 to the commerce position at a salary of $133,000, Palmer worked as Republican Gov. Larry Hogan’s deputy legislative officer.

“It’s obviously a very serious case,” Palmer’s attorney, David Irwin of Baltimore, said. “It’s at the very early stages, but we hope to come to a resolution with the government.”

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A Commerce Department spokeswoman declined to comment, other than confirming when Palmer worked there.

“As per department policy, we do not comment further on personnel matters,” Karen Glenn Hood said.

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