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Press Release

Moorhead Man Sentenced to 10 Years in Prison for Distribution of Child Pornography

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

MINNEAPOLIS – A Moorhead man has been sentenced to 120 months in prison followed by 15 years of supervised release for distributing material depicting the sexual abuse of children. Acting U.S. Attorney Charles J. Kovats made the announcement after U.S. District Judge Susan Richard Nelson sentenced the defendant.

According to court documents, between February 2016 and August 2020, Joey David Gonzales, 36, used email and other online media to advertise, solicit, and trade images and videos depicting the sexual exploitation of children.

On August 24, 2021, Gonzales pleaded guilty to one count of distribution of child pornography.

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 the Criminal Division’s Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section, 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

This case was the result of an investigation conducted by the FBI, the Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension, and the Becker County Sheriff’s Office.

This case was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Sarah E. Hudleston.

Updated February 26, 2022

Project Safe Childhood