GARFIELD — A residential block had not one but at least two men who authorities said were collecting and sharing images of child sexual exploitation.

And one of them was an elementary school teacher in Tenafly.

On Thursday, police made two arrests in this city: Pasquale Bernaldo-Antonelli, 42, a married teacher living at 116 Ray St., and Leonardo L. Perez, an 18-year-old living right next door at 118 Ray St.

Bergen County prosecutors say the teacher used the internet to view or download about 60 files containing images of pubescent and prepubescent children who are naked or engaged in sexual acts.

Investigators say his neighbor was found with a staggering 30,525 digital files of the illegal smut.

Pasquale Bernaldo-Antonelli, a teacher in Tenafly, was arrested Oct. 10, 2019, on child porn charges. (Bergen County Prosecutor's Office)
Leonardo Perez was arrested Oct. 10, 2019, on child porn charges. (Bergen County Prosecutor's Office)

The arrests were announced in separate statements on Friday. Prosecutors said each arrest was the result of a months-long internet child porn investigation but they did not say whether the cases were related or whether the two neighbors were partners in crime.

The Tenafly school district informed parents about the arrest of the fifth-grade teacher, who pension records show has more than six years in the profession.

Bernaldo-Antonnelli is charged with third-degree possession of more than 10 files of child pornography.

Perez is charged with second-degree possession of more than 1,000 files of child pornography.

New Jersey 101.5 did not know Saturday whether either suspect had an attorney who could speak on their behalf.

Sergio Bichao is deputy digital editor at New Jersey 101.5. Send him news tips: Call 609-359-5348 or email sergio.bichao@townsquaremedia.com.

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