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Press Release

Truck Driver Sentenced To 25 Years In Prison For Sexually Assaulting Minors During A Cross-Country Trip

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

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. – Jason Leonard Valdivia, 28, of Sweetwater, Tennessee, was sentenced today by visiting U.S. District Judge Laurie J. Michelson, in the Eastern District of Tennessee at Knoxville, to serve 300 months in federal prison for transporting a minor in interstate commerce for the purpose of engaging in criminal sexual activity with the minor.

Following his imprisonment, Valdivia will be supervised by the U.S. Probation Office for 15 years and will be required to register with the state sex offender registry in any state in which he lives, works, or attends school.

The investigation began in August 2018 after a minor reported that Valdivia had sexually assaulted the minor during a cross-country trip during the summer of 2018.  When confronted, Valdivia admitted that he had engaged in sexual acts with two minors during the trip.  Subsequent investigation revealed that Valdivia sexually assaulted the minors in his truck in June 2018 during a trip from Tennessee to Nevada and back.

The case was investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation. Assistant U.S. Attorney Matthew T. Morris represented the United States in court.

This case was brought as part of Project Safe Childhood (PSC), 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, PSC 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 PSC, please visit



Rachelle Barnes
Public Information Officer
(865) 545-4167

Updated April 18, 2023

Project Safe Childhood