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Justice News

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

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Thursday, July 25, 2019

Indian National Sentenced To More Than 20 Years For Filming Sexual Abuse Of An 11-Year-Old Child

Fort Myers, FL – U.S. District Judge Sheri Polster Chappell has sentenced Divesh Valanju (30, India) to 21 years and 10 months in federal prison for producing child pornography. Valanju had pleaded guilty on April 11, 2019.

According to court documents, Valanju met an 11-year old child via two online messaging apps. He lied about his name on the apps and exchanged sexually-explicit images with the child. On two occasions, Valanju arranged to meet the child at Max Hasse Park in Collier County. After the victim’s parents dropped her off at the park, purportedly to meet her friends, Valanju picked the child up, drove her to a motel and filmed sex acts that he performed with the child. 

This case was investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s Innocent Images Task Force. It was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Charles Schmitz.

It is another case 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 the United States Attorneys’ Offices and the Criminal Division’s Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section, Project Safe Childhood marshals federal, state, and local resources to locate, apprehend, and prosecute individuals who sexually exploit children, and 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 July 25, 2019