Details were revealed in a statement released by the U.S. Attorney's office in Boston. It said Portway had engaged in "numerous online chats with many individuals" about abducting and murdering children and exchanged child abuse images.
Portway, 40, admitted to "solicitation to commit a crime of violence" and distributing and possessing child abuse images.
Since at least 2010, Portway communicated with Michael Arnett of Kansas, trading images of injured, mutilated and dead children and chatting about sexual abuse, rape, abduction, murder and cannibalization of children.
Portway had "repeatedly solicited Arnett to kidnap a child for him, with the intent that Portway would ultimately rape, kill and eat that child." Arnett had since pleaded guilty in Kansas to the sexual exploitation of a child for the purposes of producing child abuse images.
Examination of computers also revealed more than 4,500 trades of child abuse images between Portway and others, said by authorities to be part of a worldwide network of child porn offenders.
“Clearly, the facts of this case were quite disturbing and we are grateful law enforcement acted when they did,” said United States Attorney Carmen M. Ortiz. "Even though criminals attempt to hide in the anonymity provided by the Internet, the Department of Justice is committed to aggressively pursuing them to ensure that there is no place to hide.”
Portway faces 216 to 327 months in prison in the U.S. and a lifetime supervised release as a registered sex offender. He will be deported back to Britain after serving his sentence.