Kentucky Man Pleads Guilty to Federal Child Sexual Exploitation Offense
ALBUQUERQUE – Earlier today in Albuquerque federal court, Craig Andrew Armstrong, 25, of Louisville, Kentucky, entered a guilty plea to traveling with intent to engage in illicit sexual contact under a plea agreement with the United States Attorney's Office. Under the terms of his plea agreement, Armstrong will be sentenced to 12-years imprisonment to be followed by a lifetime of supervised release. Armstrong has been in federal custody since September 28, 2010, and remains detained pending his sentencing hearing, which has yet to be scheduled.
United States Attorney Kenneth J. Gonzales said officers of the Albuquerque Police Department (APD) and the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) arrested Armstrong, who was in the company of a 12-year old girl, in a local motel, on September 27, 2010. According to the criminal complaint, APD officers went to the motel after the child's mother reported receiving an anonymous call alerting her that the child was in the motel. During a safe house interview, the child admitting meeting Armstrong in August 2010 through an Internet website and, after that, Armstrong communicated with her by cellphone and texting. The child said she received a text message from Armstrong on September 26, 2010 notifying her that he was in Albuquerque. She reported that Armstrong took her to the motel where he performed sexual acts on her. The criminal complaint alleges that Armstrong admitted meeting the child through an Internet website and traveling from Louisville, KY to Albuquerque to have a sexual relationship with the child. It also alleges that Armstrong admitted to performing sex acts with the child multiple times over a day and a half time frame.
In his plea agreement, Armstrong admitted traveling from Kentucky to Albuquerque for the purpose of having sexual intercourse with the child and that he in fact had intercourse with the child various times from September 26, 2010 to September 27, 2010. Armstrong further admitted that he was 24 at the time and believed that the child was 14, and that he knew the child did not have her parents' permission to be with him.
The case was investigated by APD, the FBI and the Second Judicial District Attorney’s Office in Bernalillo County and is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Charlyn Rees and was brought as part of Project Safe Childhood. Project Safe Childhood is 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 U.S. Attorneys’ Offices and the Criminal Division’s Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section, Project Safe Childhood marshals federal, state and local resources to better 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.