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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Middle District of Florida

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Friday, March 2, 2018

Florida Man Sentenced To 60 Years In Prison For Using An Infant And A Toddler To Produce Child Pornography

Jacksonville – A Middleburg, Florida man who used an infant and a toddler to produce child pornography was sentenced to 60 years in federal prison yesterday, to be followed by a lifetime of supervised release.

U.S. Attorney Maria Chapa Lopez of the Middle District of Florida, Acting Assistant Attorney General John P. Cronan of the Justice Department’s Criminal Division, and Special Agent in Charge James C. Spero of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s Homeland Security Investigations (ICE-HSI) Tampa, made the announcement.

Andrew Leslie, 23, a former software engineer, pleaded guilty before U.S. District Judge Brian J. Davis on Oct. 21, 2017.

“Yesterday’s sentence demonstrates the severity of the crimes committed in this case,” said U.S. Attorney Chapa Lopez. “We intend to continue our pursuit in prosecuting such egregious crimes as this, in hopes that justice will be served for the victims.”

“Andrew Leslie committed unspeakable crimes against the most vulnerable of victims, children so young that they literally cannot speak for themselves” said Acting Assistant Attorney General John P. Cronan.  “Our prosecutors and law enforcement partners are committed to identifying and prosecuting offenders like Andrew Leslie and securing sentences like today’s, which ensures that he will never harm another child.”

“This predator has committed atrocities that are beyond comprehension,” said Special Agent in Charge Spero. “We hope yesterday’s sentencing can bring some solace to the victims in their recovery process.” 

According to admissions made in conjunction with the guilty plea, during the execution of a federal search warrant at Leslie’s Middleburg residence, agents located a digital camera next to Leslie’s bed.  Inside of the camera was a memory card that contained a series of images depicting Leslie sexually abusing two children, one of which was an infant child and the second who was approximately two years old.  The two-year-old child, whom Leslie admitted was in bed with Leslie at the time law enforcement agents entered the residence, was found in the residence and rescued.  Forensic analysis of other digital devices seized from the residence revealed that Leslie had produced, received, distributed, and possessed numerous images and videos depicting child pornography.

This case was investigated by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s Homeland Security Investigations and the Clay County Sheriff’s Office.

Assistant U.S. Attorney D. Rodney Brown of the Middle District of Florida and Trial Attorney Lauren E. Britsch of the Criminal Division’s Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section (CEOS) prosecuted the case.

This case was brought as part of Project Safe Childhood, 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 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.

Topic(s): 
Project Safe Childhood
Component(s): 
Updated March 5, 2018