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Press Release

Connecticut Man Sentenced To 120 Months On Child Exploitation Charge

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Eastern District of Michigan

DETROIT – A Hartford, Connecticut man was sentenced today to 120 months in prison on child exploitation charges, announced Acting United States Attorney Saima Mohsin.

Mohsin was joined in the announcement by Special Agent in Charge Vance Callender, Homeland Security Investigations (HSI).

Sentenced was Joshua Depriest, 32.  Depriest pleaded guilty on December 18, 2019 before U.S. District Judge Judith Levy to online enticement of a minor.

According to court records, in October, 2018, Depriest communicated through Facebook Messenger (an online social media service) with an 7-year-old boy and repeatedly asked the minor victim to send sexually explicit photos of himself.  Depriest admitted to soliciting explicit videos and photos of the minor victim, as well as to soliciting and obtaining explicit videos and photos from 20 to 30 other boys, 8 to 9 years of age. Depriest also distributed child pornography to his trading partners on the internet.

“This defendant is a dangerous sexual predator whose exploitation of boys as young as 7 years old using social media platforms like Facebook Messenger is particularly despicable. The Department of Justice is committed to the safety and well-being of the most vulnerable members of our society – our children,” stated Acting US Attorney Mohsin.

“As our children spend increasingly more time online, they are increasingly vulnerable to predators who lurk in the supposed anonymity of the Internet,” said Vance R. Callender, HSI Special Agent in Charge for Michigan and Ohio.  “This case underscores HSI’s commitment to work with its law enforcement partners, not only to arrest offenders but also bring justice to the victims- especially children.”

This case was investigated by agents of the HSI with the assistance of the Taylor Police Department.  Assistant U.S. Attorney Lisandra Fernandez-Silber prosecuted the case.



Updated May 20, 2021

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