WILKES-BARRE — A former educator from Lackawanna County has been sentenced for asking boys to send him naked pictures online.
Mark Kandel is a former Scranton School Director and a longtime employee of the Northeastern Educational Intermediate Unit #19 in Archbald. He was arrested almost a year ago for sending sexual text messages to five teenage boys.
On Monday, a federal judge accepted plea deal for Kandel and sentenced him to 14 and half years in prison.
It was last November when the Lackawanna County D.A.’s office arrested former educator Mark Kandel of Peckville. Two teenage boys had come forward saying Kandel sent them sexual text messages.
Then, federal investigators got involved, eventually charging him with the online enticement of five teenage boys.
Kandel faced 50 years in prison but a federal judge accepted a plea deal to sentence him on only one charge of online enticement and that judge decided to send Kandel to prison for 14 and a half years.
Before he started serving that sentence, Kandel and a courtroom of people heard from one of his victims, a young man who received text messages from Kandel when he was a student at Valley View High School.
The victim said he and other boys were promised money in exchange for their communication. The victim said he was ridiculed by other students after he came forward.
Kandel’s attorney Frank Santomauro called Kandel extremely remorseful and was happy with the 14 and a half year sentence. That’s a few years shy of what prosecutors had hoped for.
“I sympathize with everyone who was involved here. It was a difficult day for everybody. But I know Mark is glad it’s over and just move on to the future, that’s it.”
There’s no parole in the federal system, so Kandel will spend the next 14 and a half years behind bars and as another part of his sentence, Kandel will have to register as a sex offender for the rest of his life.