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Press Release

Florida Man Sentenced To Federal Prison For Sexual Exploitation Of Minors

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

FLINT — Petar Vuk Pejic, 23, of Hollywood, Florida was sentenced yesterday to 30 years in federal prison on charges of sexual exploitation of a minor and distribution of child pornography, U.S. Attorney Dawn N. Ison announced. 

Ison was joined in the announcement by Cheyvoryea Gibson, Special Agent in Charge of the FBI in Michigan, Jeffrey B. Veltri, Special Agent in Charge of the FBI’s Miami, Florida office, Sheriff Christopher R. Swanson, Genesee County Sheriff and David Leyton, Genesee County Prosecutor.

U.S. District Court Judge F. Kay Behm imposed sentence on Pejic following his guilty plea to sexually exploiting a Michigan minor and distributing child pornography that he produced of the minor. According to court documents, after Pejic met the Michigan minor online, he requested that the minor send him sexually explicit videos, and the minor complied. In February 2022, Pejic travelled from Florida to Michigan to have sex with the minor, whom Pejic knew was 12 years old at the time. Pejic then took the minor to a hotel and engaged in sexual acts with the minor, which he recorded. He subsequently distributed videos of the minor engaged in sexual conduct using the internet.

As part of his plea agreement, Pejic also admitted to using the internet to entice two other minors to engage in sexual activity. In March 2022, he travelled from Florida to the states of Oregon and Washington to engage in sexual activity with those minors, who were 14 and 15 years old at the time. Pejic also admitted to possessing, receiving, and distributing other child pornography.

Law enforcement first learned of Pejic’s activities in Michigan when the suspected sexual abuse of the Michigan minor was reported to the Genesee County Sheriff’s Office. The Sheriff’s Office, local law enforcement officers in Florida, and the FBI then worked together to arrest Pejic and investigate his sexual exploitation of children, with the additional assistance of local law enforcement officers in Oregon and Washington.

“This investigation highlights the importance of child sexual abuse reporting requirements. It was because of the initial abuse report in this case that law enforcement officers were able to identify and stop Pejic from continuing to sexually exploit children online and in person,” said United States Attorney Ison. “The strong cooperation between federal and local law enforcement partners across the country then helped bring Pejic to justice.

“The safety and security of our children remains one of the FBI’s top investigative priorities,” said Cheyvoryea Gibson, Special Agent in Charge of the FBI in Michigan. “With the help of our partners, we remain committed to identifying, investigating, and prosecuting those who victimize our most vulnerable. I would like to especially thank the FBI Miami Field Office and the Genesee County Sheriff’s Office for their assistance with this case.”

“The FBI will do everything in our power to protect children and punish those who prey upon society’s most vulnerable people and inflict irreparable damage upon those innocent lives,” said Jeffrey B. Veltri, Special Agent in Charge, FBI Miami Field Office. “I commend the close cooperation and professionalism we encountered with the Genesee County Sheriff’s Office, FBI Detroit, the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of Michigan, and the numerous other law enforcement agencies in Florida, Oregon, and Washington whose cooperation and commitment were essential for this case.”

Prosecutor Leyton stated, “This case highlights the very real and very dark side of child sexual exploitation but, at the same time, it highlights the very real and very positive side of law enforcement working together at every level from the local Sheriff and Prosecutor to federal agents and U.S. Attorneys across multiple state lines. I am proud of the work we have done together to stop this child predator in his tracks and to see justice through in a court of law.”

This investigation was conducted by the Genesee County Sheriff’s office and special agents of the FBI’s Flint Resident Office and Miami, Florida, with additional assistance from local law enforcement officers in Florida, Oregon, and Washington.  The case was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorneys Ann Nee, Katharine Hemann and Anthony Vance.

Updated March 6, 2024

Topic
Project Safe Childhood