Pennsylvania Man Charged With Child Exploitation

LegalImage by Mike Braun

SCRANTON, PA — The United States Attorney’s Office for the Middle District of Pennsylvania announced that Jesse Diaz, age 53, of Sciota, Monroe County, Pennsylvania, was charged on Thursday in a criminal information with a child exploitation crime involving accessing and viewing child pornography.

According to United States Attorney Gerard M. Karam, the information alleges that Diaz used his Kik messenger account to access a private chat group dedicated to the distribution and sharing of child pornography with the intent to view minors, including a minor under the age of 12 years old, engaging in sexually explicit conduct.

The charges stem from an investigation conducted by the Department of Homeland Security, Homeland Security Investigations – Philadelphia, Pennsylvania and Portland, Oregon Divisions.  The case is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Michelle Olshefski.

The maximum penalty under federal law is 20 years’ imprisonment, a term of supervised release following imprisonment, and a fine. Under the Federal Sentencing Guidelines, the Judge is also required to consider and weigh a number of factors, including the nature, circumstances and seriousness of the offense; the history and characteristics of the defendant; and the need to punish the defendant, protect the public and provide for the defendant’s educational, vocational and medical needs. For these reasons, the statutory maximum penalty for the offense is not an accurate indicator of the potential sentence for a specific defendant.

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This case was brought as part of Project Safe Childhood, a nationwide initiative launched in May 2006 by the Department of Justice to combat the growing epidemic of child sexual exploitation and abuse. Led by the United States Attorneys’ Offices and the Criminal Division’s Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section, Project Safe Childhood marshals federal, state, and local resources to locate, apprehend, and prosecute individuals who sexually exploit children, and to identify and rescue victims. For more information about Project Safe Childhood, please visit  www.usdoj.gov/psc.  For more information about internet safety education, please visit  www.usdoj.gov/psc and click on the tab “resources.”

Indictments and Criminal Informations are only allegations. Information is subject to change at any time as additional details may emerge. Information, a criminal complaint, or an arrest is not a declaration of guilt. A suspect, arrestee, or defendant is presumed innocent until proven guilty in a court of law.

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