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Press Release

Syracuse Man Sentenced to 20 Years on Child Exploitation Convictions

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Northern District of New York

SYRACUSE, NEW YORK - Austin Pratt, age 24, of Syracuse, was sentenced in federal court today to serve 20 years in prison for Sexual Exploitation of a Child and Distribution of Child Pornography, announced Acting United States Attorney Antionette T. Bacon, Janeen DiGuiseppi, Special Agent in Charge of the Albany Field Office of the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), and New York State Police Superintendent Kevin Bruen.

As a part of his earlier guilty plea, Pratt admitted that he used the Instagram name “redneck_pratt” to message with a person who represented themselves to be a 15-year-old girl, but who law enforcement later confirmed was an adult male from Nevada.  Pratt admitted that in exchange for sexually explicit images from the “girl,” he sexually abused a 10-year-old child, produced images and a video of that abuse, and sent the images and video to the person he believed to be a 15-year-old girl.  

In addition to the 20-year term of imprisonment, United States District Judge Hon. David N. Hurd imposed a term of 20 years of supervised release which will follow the term of incarceration.  Pratt will also be required to register as a sex offender upon his release from federal prison. 

This case was investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), Syracuse Resident Agency and the New York State Police as a part of the Mid-State Child Exploitation Task Force, in cooperation with the Syracuse Police Department and the Onondaga County District Attorney’s Office.  It was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Lisa M. Fletcher, Project Safe Childhood Coordinator for the Northern District of New York. 

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 identify and rescue victims. For more information about Project Safe Childhood, please visit

Updated October 6, 2021

Project Safe Childhood