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Press Release

San Pedro Man Sentenced to 30 Years in Prison for Attempting to Persuade Minor to Produce Sexually Explicit Photos of Herself

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Central District of California

LOS ANGELES – A South Bay man has been sentenced to 360 months in federal prison for attempting – via text messages and audio calls – to convince an 11-year-old girl to produce child sexual abuse material (CSAM), the Justice Department announced today.

Anthony Frank Scovotto, 58, of San Pedro, was sentenced on Monday by United States District Judge Dale S. Fischer.

Scovotto pleaded guilty in May 2023 to one count of attempted production of child pornography.

In April and May of 2017, Scovotto contacted the victim, whom he believed was 12 years old, via audio calls and text messages. To convince the victim to produce CSAM, Scovotto told the victim that he loved her and that they were “meant for each other.”

Scovotto pretended to be 18 years old, and he instructed the victim to contact him in an online chat room. While they were both in the chat room, Scovotto asked the victim to take off her clothes. In text messages, Scovotto asked the victim to send him sexually explicit photographs of herself.

In his plea agreement, Scovotto admitted that in 2017 he separately contacted two additional victims online, both of whom were minors. He asked both victims to send him sexually explicit photographs of themselves, which they did.

“[Scovotto] preyed upon vulnerable pre-teen and adolescent girls by posing as a teenager or young man and pretending to love and care for them,” prosecutors argued in a sentencing memorandum. “He betrayed their trust and manipulated them for his sexual pleasure.”

In arguing in favor of the 30-year prison sentence, prosecutors noted that Scovotto’s criminal history includes a felony conviction in 2001 in Orange County Superior Court for attempted lewd and lascivious acts upon a child younger than 14 years old.

The FBI investigated this matter.

Assistant United States Attorneys Claire E. Kelly and Scott M. Lara of the Violent and Organized Crime Section prosecuted this case.


Ciaran McEvoy
Public Information Officer
(213) 894-4465

Updated April 3, 2024

Violent Crime
Press Release Number: 24-074