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Press Release

Virginia Man Indicted in D.C. on Charges of Distribution of Child Pornography

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, District of Columbia
Defendant Was Enrolled in Law School in Pennsylvania at Time of Offense

            WASHINGTON – Andrey Chun Sarmiento, 24, of Hallwood, Virginia, is charged by indictment, unsealed today, with distribution of child pornography, announced U.S. Attorney Matthew M. Graves, FBI Special Agent in Charge David J. Scott, of the Washington Field Office’s Criminal and Cyber Division, and Chief Pamela Smith, of the Metropolitan Police Department (MPD). Special agents with the FBI arrested Sarmiento in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, on Friday, March 1.

            According to the indictment, on February 13, 2024, Chun Sarmiento distributed numerous video files depicting adult males engaging in sexually explicit conduct with minors via an encrypted instant messaging application.

            On February 13, 2024, a member of the MPD-FBI Child Exploitation Task Force was monitoring an online application in an undercover capacity.  Law enforcement has come to learn that the application is used by some individuals who have a sexual interest in children. The undercover agent encountered Chun Sarmiento, who sent a message believing he was communicating with a pedophile. Chun Sarmiento expressed his sexual interest in children and sent the undercover agent a link to an online folder containing hundreds of videos, many of which depict adult males sexually abusing prepubescent boys.  At the time of the offense, Chun Sarmiento was enrolled in law school in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania. 

            On February 29, 2024, a federal grand jury in the District of Columbia returned an indictment charging Chun Sarmiento with one count of distribution of child pornography.  The case is assigned to the Honorable Loren L. AliKhan of the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia.

            On Friday, March 1, the FBI arrested Chun Sarmiento in Pennsylvania and executed a search warrant at his residence there.  Chun Sarmiento will remain in custody pending a detention hearing to be held in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia.

            Distribution of child pornography carries a mandatory minimum sentence of five years’ imprisonment and a statutory maximum of 20 years’ imprisonment.  The statutory sentences for federal offenses are prescribed by Congress and are provided here for informational purposes.  Any sentence will be determined by the Court based on the advisory Sentencing Guideline and other statutory factors.

            The case is being investigated by the FBI’s Washington Field Office and the Metropolitan Police Department.  Valuable assistance was provided by the FBI’s Philadelphia Field Office’s Harrisburg Resident Agency and the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Middle District of Pennsylvania.  The case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Paul V. Courtney of the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Columbia.

            An indictment is merely an allegation, and all defendants are presumed innocent until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt in a court of law.

Updated March 5, 2024

Violent Crime
Press Release Number: 24-205