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Press Release

Purcellville man sentenced for paying Philippine sex trafficker to sexually abuse children on live webcams

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

ALEXANDRIA, Va. – A Purcellville man was sentenced today to 20 years in prison for his sexual exploitation of five children and his receipt and possession of thousands of images and videos depicting child sexual abuse material (CSAM).

According to court documents, Raymond Lee Chavez, 70, was a consultant on issues related to climate change and served international clients, including the United Nations. Between April 2017 and April 2022, Chavez purchased at least 15 livestreaming webcam shows involving the sexual abuse and exploitation of five prepubescent children from child sex traffickers based in the Philippines. Chavez recorded segments of several livestreams with his cell phone and saved the videos to his external hard drives.

Chavez and the traffickers communicated to arrange times for the shows, negotiate payment, and discuss the sex acts that Chavez wanted the children to perform. Often, prior to the start of the livestream, Chavez had a video call with the trafficker to preview the child. During this preview, Chavez asked the trafficker to display the child and confirm the child would perform certain sex acts. Once Chavez paid, the trafficker livestreamed the sexual abuse of the child, and on at least one occasion multiple children at once, being abused and performing sex acts. Chavez often wanted the children to wear makeup and “sexy stockings.” During the sexual abuse, Chavez continued to communicate with the trafficker and gave specific instructions about what he wanted to see the children do.

During a search of his residence on March 1, 2023, law enforcement found six different electronic devices containing more than 5,000 images and videos depicting child sexual abuse. Chavez had collected the CSAM between February 2003 and July 2022. The CSAM included depictions of the sexual abuse of toddlers and other prepubescent children. Chavez also used his computer to conduct numerous internet searches related to child prostitution and sex tourism in foreign countries. For example, in July and August 2012, Chavez searched for “child prostitution in cambodia 2012” and “xanax and viagra purchase in cambodia.” Chavez’s passport shows that he was issued, and used, a visa to visit Cambodia between July 27, 2012, and August 27, 2012.

Jessica D. Aber, U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Virginia, and Derek W. Gordon, Special Agent in Charge of Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) Washington, D.C., made the announcement after sentencing by U.S. District Judge Patricia Tolliver Giles.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Lauren Halper prosecuted the case.

This case was brought as part of Project Safe Childhood, a nationwide initiative launched in May 2006 by the Department of Justice to combat the growing epidemic of child sexual exploitation and abuse. Led by U.S. Attorney’s Offices and the Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section (CEOS), Project Safe Childhood 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 Project Safe Childhood, please visit www.justice.gov/psc.

A copy of this press release is located on the website of the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of Virginia. Related court documents and information are located on the website of the District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia or on PACER by searching for Case No. 1:23-cr-180.

Contact

Press Officer
USAVAE.Press@usdoj.gov

Updated June 27, 2024

Topic
Project Safe Childhood