DETROIT – A St. Clair County man was sentenced to 15 years in federal prison for attempting to coerce a minor into producing sexually explicit images online, announced United States Attorney Dawn N. Ison.
Ison was joined in the announcement by Special Agent in Charge Cheyvoryea Gibson, Federal Bureau of Investigation, Detroit Field Division.
Raymond Alexander Elliott, 35, of Columbus, Michigan, was sentenced by United States District Judge Gershwin A. Drain. In 2021, Elliott engaged in a pattern of sexual exploitation online, requesting sexually explicit images of a 13-year-old boy who resided in Missouri.
The FBI began investigating Elliott after the victim disclosed abuse and gave agents his cellphone to use to communicate with those contacting him. Elliott reached out to the victim—not knowing it was an FBI agent with whom he was now communicating—requesting that the 13-year-old resume their sexual conversations and send him additional sexually explicit images. The FBI was able to track Elliott down to his home in Columbus, Michigan, after identifying him from the social media accounts through which he was attempting to communicate with the victim.
In January 2022, FBI agents executed a search warrant at Elliott’s home. They recovered his electronic devices, which contained numerous files of child pornography and communications with other online users in which Elliott discussed sexually exploiting children and shared and distributed child pornography. Elliott was arrested and admitted to possessing and distributing child pornography online and communicating with the 13-year-old victim in Missouri.
“Thanks to the victim’s bravery in coming forward to authorities to disclose his abuse at the hands of online predators like the defendant, the FBI was able to identify and arrest Raymond Elliott and stop his cycle of online exploitation,” U.S. Attorney Ison stated.
"The FBI prioritizes the protection of children from dangerous predators and is fully committed to investigating those who seek to harm the most vulnerable members of society,” said Cheyvoryea Gibson, Special Agent in Charge of the FBI in Michigan. “Those who make the unconscionable decision to victimize innocent children will be brought to justice. We would like to extend our appreciation to our wide network of law enforcement partners for their critical support. The FBI urges the public to report alleged crimes of child sexual or physical abuse by calling 1-800-CALLFBI (1-800-225-5324) or submitting tips online to http://tips.fbi.gov."
This case was investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation and was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Diane Princ.