Local Couple Sentenced in Federal Court for Producing Child Pornography
PENSACOLA, FLORIDA – The U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Northern District of Florida announced that Brandon Gillreath, 33, and Corine Motley, 25, a married couple from Mary Ester, Florida, were sentenced late yesterday afternoon on federal charges of conspiring to produce child pornography. Gillreath was sentenced to serve 35 years in prison, followed by a lifetime term of supervised release. Motley was sentenced to serve 29½ years in prison, followed by 20 years of supervised release. Gillreath was also sentenced for making false statements to federal agents.
A federal investigation began on December 12, 2012, when U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s Homeland Security Investigations (“HSI”) received a referral from the Danish National Police regarding a video containing child pornography. The video had been obtained from the Internet by law enforcement officers in Denmark. The video was referred to U.S. law enforcement because the Danish National Police believed that the video had most likely been produced in the United States. The video depicted an adult female and a prepubescent female, approximately five years old, engaged in sexually explicit conduct.
To identify the adult female featured in the videos, HSI issued a public appeal for assistance. Hours later, based on information received through that public appeal, HSI, the Okaloosa County Sheriff’s Office, and the Department of Justice were able to determine that Motley was the adult female in the video who was engaging in sexually explicit conduct with the minor child. Motley was promptly arrested. The Pensacola Police Department and the Northwest Florida Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force were also instrumental in bringing Motley and Gillreath to justice.
“This case was particularly disturbing because the defendants severely abused local children, and cruelly captured the abuse on film for the purpose of circulating it via the Internet,” said U.S. Attorney Pamela Marsh. “Fortunately, thanks to the public’s fast response to HSI’s request for assistance, law enforcement was able to quickly identify the perpetrators and stop the abuse.”
HSI obtained federal search warrants for the defendants’ laptop, digital camera, and email accounts. Within the digital media, federal agents located over a dozen images of Motley engaging in sexually explicit conduct with a second minor female. There were also images of Gillreath engaging in sexually explicit conduct with this second minor female. This second victim was approximately ten years old at the time the child pornography images were produced. Recently, even more minor victims have disclosed engaging in sexually explicit conduct with Motley and Gillreath.
“The power of social media and traditional media outlets proved invaluable in this case,” said Susan McCormick, special agent in charge of HSI Tampa, which oversees the Pensacola office that conducted this investigation. “I thank everyone who assisted. Not only did we put two child predators behind bars, we also rescued at least two children from further abuse.”
U.S. Attorney Marsh praised the efforts of all the law enforcement agencies who worked together to capture and prosecute these two criminals. “I want to express my deep gratitude to those persons who assisted and provided information, as well as to law enforcement and our prosecutor for their excellent work on this case.” she said.
This case was brought as part of Project Safe Childhood, a nationwide initiative launched by the Department of Justice in May 2006 to combat the growing epidemic of child sexual exploitation and abuse. Led by 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 exploit children via the Internet, as well as to identify and rescue victims. For more information about Project Safe Childhood, please visit www.projectsafechildhood.gov.
The case was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney David L. Goldberg of the Northern District of Florida.