Baton Rouge Man Sentenced To 20 Years In Federal Prison For Sextortion Scheme
BATON ROUGE, LA – United States Attorney Walt Green announced today that Chief U.S. District Court Judge Brian A. Jackson sentenced Matthew Chaney Walker, 26, of Baton Rouge, Louisiana, to 240 months in federal prison for his scheme to extort numerous minors over the internet for the purpose of producing and receiving child pornography. WALKER was ordered to serve a 10-year term of supervised release following his release from imprisonment. WALKER was also ordered to pay $6,247.59 in restitution, a $1000 special assessment, and a $100,000 fine. At the conclusion of the sentencing, the Court ordered WALKER to begin serving his sentence immediately and remanded WALKER to the custody of the United States Marshal.
On January 7, 2016, WALKER pleaded guilty to four counts of extortion, in violation of Title 18, United States Code, Section 875(d); three counts of production of child pornography, in violation of Title 18, United States Code, Sections 2251(a) and 2; and three counts of receipt of child pornography, in violation of Title 18, United States Code, Section 2252A(a)(2). In connection with his guilty plea, WALKER admitted that, in 2014, he met young girls online for the purpose of sexually exploiting them. In order to lure his victims, WALKER pretended to be a teenage girl and used different online screen names. During chats with his victims, Walker broached the topic of trading nude and sexually explicit images. To lower his victims’ inhibitions, WALKER initiated sexually explicit conversations and sent sexually suggestive photographs of other young girls that he represented to be of himself. Once he obtained compromising pictures of his victims, WALKER then demanded that the victims send him images even more graphic than those they had already sent to him. WALKER threatened to send compromising pictures of the victims to their families, schools, friends, and the public should they refuse to comply with his demands. As a result of his conduct, WALKER’s victims created and sent child pornography to him.
U.S. Attorney Green stated: “This case provides another tragic cautionary tale for anyone concerned about the dangers posed to our children by criminals on the internet. This defendant sexually exploited his victims by extortion and psychological manipulation, often preying on children in the supposed safety of their own homes. Today’s sentence appropriately reflects the seriousness of these crimes and the need to deter others inclined to engage in similar activity. I greatly appreciate the excellent and hard work of the prosecutor and agents handling this important matter, and commend the bravery of the victims and their families in persevering through this ordeal.”
“HSI will continue to aggressively investigate and arrest the people who seek to prey on the most vulnerable in our society,” said Raymond R. Parmer Jr., Special Agent-in-Charge, New Orleans Field Office, Homeland Security Investigations. “Thanks to our efforts with our law enforcement partners we’ve ensured Walker will never again take advantage of children.”
This case is being handled jointly by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, Homeland Security Investigations, and the United States Secret Service, with assistance from the Cyber Crime Unit and the Criminal Division of the Louisiana Attorney General’s Office; the Peterborough Police Service, a member of the Ontario Provincial Strategy to Protect Children from Sexual Abuse and Exploitation on the Internet; the Cheatham County, Tennessee Sheriff’s Office; the Naperville, Illinois Police Department; and the Ottawa County, Michigan Sheriff’s Office, among others.
This matter is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Cam T. Le, who serves as the Project Safe Childhood Coordinator for the Middle District of Louisiana.
These federal charges are part of Project Safe Childhood, a nationwide initiative by the U.S. 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 those who sexually exploit children, and to identify and rescue victims. For more information about Project Safe Childhood, please visit www.usdoj.gov/psc. Click on the “Resources” tab for information about Internet safety education.