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Press Release

Champaign County Man to Serve 45 Years in Prison for Sexual Exploitation of Children

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

URBANA, Ill. – Chief U.S. District Judge James E. Shadid today ordered Joshua E. Lange, 40, of Tolono, Ill., to serve 45 years in federal prison for his sexual exploitation of children from September 2015 through January 2017.

On April 27, 2018, Lange entered pleas of guilty to the three counts of sexual exploitation of children as charged in the indictment returned by the grand jury in November 2017. Lange admitted that he used the minors to engage in sexually explicit conduct, while the minors were asleep, and produced videos and photographs in his basement of such conduct.

U.S. Attorney John C. Milhiser stated, “We will continue to work with our state and federal partners to identify these predators and bring them to justice.”

In a separate case, in Champaign County Circuit Court, Lange is scheduled to be sentenced on Nov. 13, 2018, for aggravated criminal sexual abuse. It was during the investigation of a criminal sexual abuse allegation that investigators discovered that Lange possessed images of sexually explicit conduct depicting at least three additional minors.

Lange has remained in the custody of the U.S. Marshals Service since his arrest on Nov. 3, 2017.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Elly M. Peirson represented the government in the prosecution. The charges were investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation; the Champaign Police Department, and the Champaign County Sheriff’s Office, with the cooperation of the Champaign County States Attorney.

The case was brought as part of Project Safe Childhood, a nationwide initiative to combat the growing epidemic of child sexual exploitation and abuse launched in May 2006 by the Department of Justice.  Led by U.S. Attorneys' Offices and the Criminal Division's Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section (CEOS), 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


Updated November 9, 2018

Project Safe Childhood