By Sara Powers

MILAN, Mich. (AP) — A federal inmate pleaded guilty to second-degree murder Thursday, admitting that he was one of three people to attack and kill the leader of a child pornography ring who was in custody in Michigan.

The government will recommend that Adam Wright, formerly of Springfield, Illinois, not get more than 27 years in prison, according to his plea agreement.

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Christian Maire was killed in 2019 at a detention center on the grounds of a federal prison in Milan, about 50 miles (80.4 kilometers) southwest of Detroit. Men are housed at the center while awaiting trial, sentencing or a permanent prison assignment.

Before his death, Maire, 40, had been sentenced to 40 years in prison after pleading guilty to a child exploitation enterprise. Prosecutors at that time said he was the “mastermind” of an “egregious crime syndicate” that coerced vulnerable girls to engage in sexual activity on a website.

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Maire of Binghamton, New York, disputed that he was the ringleader but told a judge that he had “shattered so many lives.”

Charges are pending against two other men accused of killing Maire.

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