Grand Jury Accuses Inland Empire Man of 17 Child Exploitation Of - Palm Springs News, Weather, Traffic, Breaking News

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Grand Jury Accuses Inland Empire Man of 17 Child Exploitation Offenses

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An Inland Empire man was named today in a federal grand jury indictment that charges him with a series of child exploitation crimes for allegedly coercing six boys around the nation to send him sexually explicit videos.

Francisco Javier Soledad, 24, of Eastvale, was charged today in a 17-count indictment that alleges six counts of producing of child pornography, six counts of using the internet to induce a minor to engage in criminal sexual activity, two counts of advertising child pornography, two counts of distributing child pornography, and one count of possessing child pornography on an iPhone.

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Soledad was arrested on March 9 by special agents with U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) after federal prosecutors filed a criminal complaint that accused him of one count of producing child pornography in relation to one 13-year-old victim.

The indictment filed today outlines how Soledad victimized six boys between the ages of 12 and 15 over the course of several months in 2016. Soledad allegedly found the victims, who spanned the nation from California to Georgia, on social media sites.

According to court documents, Soledad assumed different personas – sometimes a 13-year-old boy, and other times an adult woman – to convince the victims to send him explicit photographs and videos. Several of the victims refused demands to send additional images, which allegedly prompted Soledad to threaten to publish the previously sent images on social media platforms. In at least one instance, Soledad did in fact publish one of the victim’s nude images on Twitter.

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A search of Soledad’s digital devices revealed thousands of images and videos of suspected child pornography. The majority of the child pornography images appear to have been self-produced by the depicted victims. Law enforcement has not yet identified all of the children Soledad may have victimized.

Anyone with information about Soledad – or his Snapchat handle, “linkinparkrocks” – is encouraged to call HSI’s toll-free tip line 1-866-2DHS-ICE or 1-866-234-7423.

Soledad is scheduled to be arraigned on the indictment on April 12 in United States District Court in Los Angeles. Soledad is currently free on a $170,000 bond.

The charges of producing child pornography and advertising child pornography each carry a mandatory minimum penalty of 15 years in federal prison and a statutory maximum sentence of 30 years. The charge of enticing a minor carries a mandatory minimum sentence of 10 years in prison and a maximum possible sentence of life. The charge of distributing child pornography carries a mandatory minimum sentence of five years and a maximum sentence of 20 years. The charge of possessing child pornography carries a statutory maximum sentence of 10 years in federal prison.

This case is being prosecuted by Special Assistant United States Attorney Teresa K.B. Beecham.

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