U.S. Department of Justice
Peter F. Neronha
United States Attorney
District of Rhode Island
December 20, 2013
Providence Man Sentenced to 15 Years in Federal Prison for
Producing Child Pornography and Transporting it Into the United States
PROVIDENCE, R.I. – Juan Carlos Santiago, 36, of Providence, R.I., was sentenced today to 15 years in federal prison for producing child pornography outside of the country and transporting it into the United States, announced United States Attorney Peter F. Neronha; Colonel Steven G. O’Donnell, Superintendent of the Rhode Island State Police; and Bruce M. Foucart, Special Agent in Charge of the Boston field office of Homeland Security Investigations (HSI).
Santiago was arrested in December 2012 by Rhode Island State Police, Homeland Security Investigations (HSI), and agents and officers assigned to the Rhode Island State Police Internet Crimes Against Children (ICAC) Task Force. An investigation by the Rhode Island State Police, the ICAC Task Force and HSI revealed that Santiago digitally recorded sexual contacts with a prepubescent minor in the Dominican Republic, which he then transported to the United States.
At sentencing, U.S. District Court Judge Mary M. Lisi also ordered Santiago to serve lifetime supervised release following his prison term, to register as a sex offender, and to pay restitution in the amount of $1,825 to the victim for expenses related to counseling services. Santiago pleaded guilty on February 4, 2013, to one count of production of child pornography outside the United States and transportation into the United States.
According to court documents and information presented to the court, in May 2012, a special agent with the United States Naval Criminal Investigative Service assigned to the ICAC Task Force, while conducting an online Internet investigation focused on identifying users who traded child pornography, observed an IP address at Santiago’s Providence residence from which child pornography files were being traded. The agent successfully downloaded two files containing child pornography.
On October 26, 2012, ICAC Task Force agents and members of the Rhode Island State Police conducted a court authorized search of Santiago’s residence and seized two computers, digital storage devices, a digital camera and assorted CDs and DVDs. A forensic examination of the equipment by a Rhode Island State Police Computer Crimes digital forensic analyst revealed numerous images of Santiago engaged in sexual contact with a prepubescent male. Based on GPS coordinates embedded inside the photographs, agents determined that the images were taken in the Dominican Republic in 2011. Further investigation by HSI revealed that Santiago made several trips to the Dominican Republic, including on or about the same dates some of the images were created.
At the time of his guilty plea, Santiago admitted to the court that he had engaged in sexual contact with a prepubescent minor while in the Dominican Republic on two occasions in 2011. Santiago admitted to the court that he photographed and created video recordings of the encounters, and that he transported the images back to the United States.
The case was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Adi Goldstein.
The matter was investigated by the ICAC Task Force, Rhode Island State Police and Homeland Security Investigations.
The ICAC Task Force is a Department of Justice grant-funded program administered by the Rhode Island State Police, and is comprised of detectives from the Rhode Island State Police; Providence, West Warwick, Coventry, Warwick, Johnston, and Pawtucket Police Departments; and federal agents from ICE-HSI, United States Postal Inspectors’ Office and United States Naval Criminal Investigative Service. The objective of the ICAC Task Force is to form strong working relationships among federal, state and local law enforcement in order to effectively and efficiently prevent, detect, investigate, and prosecute online child exploitation and child pornography crimes.This case was prosecuted 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.”
To assist the media and the public, a glossary of federal judicial terms and procedures is available at http://www.justice.gov/usao/justice101/