News and Press Releases

Former Long Island Teacher and Elementary School Principal Arrested for Child Exploitation and Enticement

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
March 6, 2007

Indictment Charges That Defendant Traveled from New York to Nebraska To Engage in Sexual Activity with a Minor

Roslynn R. Mauskopf, United States Attorney for the Eastern District of New York, and Joe W. Stecher, United States Attorney for the District of Nebraska, announced the arrest this morning of Suffolk County resident JOHN MONETTI, age 38, a former Long Island school teacher and elementary school principal, on federal charges relating to child exploitation.1 MONETTI’s initial appearance is scheduled this afternoon before United States Magistrate Judge William D. Wall, at the U.S. Courthouse, 100 Federal Plaza, Central Islip, New York.

The complaint filed in the Eastern District of New York requests MONETTI’s removal to face an indictment in the District of Nebraska, charging MONETTI with Sexual Exploitation of a Juvenile, Travel with Intent to Engage in a Sexual Act with a Juvenile, and Computer Enticement of a Minor, in violation of Title 18, United States Code, Sections 2251(a) and (e), 2423(b), and 2422(b), respectively. The indictment alleges that, starting in December 2005, MONETTI began communicating over the Internet with a then 15-year-old minor female in Nebraska to persuade her to engage in sexual activity, and that in May 2006, MONETTI traveled from New York to Nebraska, where he engaged in sexual activity with the minor.

MONETTI was earlier arrested in Washington County, Nebraska, on May 29, 2006, when local sheriff’s deputies found MONETTI in a rental van, along with the 15-year-old minor whom he had met over the Internet. MONETTI was charged in state court and released on bail in June 2006. The state charges remain pending. At the time of his arrest in Nebraska, MONETTI was employed as a substitute teacher in the Commack School District on Long Island. MONETTI previously worked as a principal at the Dickinson Avenue Elementary School in the Northport-East Northport School District on Long Island, and at the William Floyd Elementary School in the William Floyd School District.

“Protection of children is of the utmost importance, and child predators should be on notice that we will devote all available resources to bring them to justice,” stated United States Attorney Mauskopf. Ms. Mauskopf extended her appreciation to the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) and the participating local law enforcement agencies for their assistance in the case.

United States Attorney Stecher stated, “The indictment was the result of the cooperative efforts of several law enforcement agencies, including U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement, the Washington County Sheriff’s Office, the Washington County Attorney’s Office, the Nebraska State Patrol, and the United States Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of New York. We appreciate the coordinated response from all agencies that have participated in this investigation.”

This arrest results from Project Safe Childhood, a nationwide initiative started in February 2006 by Attorney General Alberto R. Gonzales which is designed to protect children from on-line exploitation and abuse. Led by the United States Attorneys’ Offices, Project Safe Childhood marshals federal, state, and local resources to better investigate, apprehend, and prosecute individuals who exploit children via the Internet, as well as identify and rescue victims. For more information about Project Safe Childhood, please visit “http://www.projectsafechildhood.gov/.”

If convicted of the charges, MONETTI faces a mandatory minimum sentence of 15 years’ imprisonment on the charge of Sexual Exploitation of a Juvenile, a maximum sentence of 30 years’ imprisonment for each count, a life term of supervised release, and a $250,000 fine for each count.

MONETTI’s removal from New York to Nebraska is being handled by Assistant United States Attorney Allen L. Bode of the Office of the United States Attorney for the Eastern District of New York. The Nebraska indictment is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Michael Norris of the Office of the United States Attorney for the District of Nebraska.

The Defendant:

Name: JOHN MONETTI
DOB: September 8, 1968

 

_____________________________

1The charges in the indictment are merely allegations, and the defendant is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.


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