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Press Release

Akron Man Sentenced to 40 Years in Prison for Sexual Exploitation of Children and Receipt and Possession of Child Pornography

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

Joshua Allen Saunders, 27, of Akron, Ohio, was sentenced to 40 years in prison by U.S. District Judge John R. Adams on Thursday, August 4, 2022.  Saunders previously pleaded guilty to two counts of sexual exploitation of children and one count of receipt and distribution of visual depictions of minors engaged in sexually explicit conduct.

In addition to the sentence, Saunders was ordered to serve a lifetime of supervised release and must pay $55,000 in restitution.

“There is no greater priority for all of law enforcement than protecting our community’s children from harm and predators,” said First Assistant U.S. Attorney Michelle M. Baeppler.  “This lengthy sentence will ensure that this predator will no longer harm children and should send a message that this type of behavior only ends with significant time behind bars.”

“Identifying, investigating, and catching child predators is a critical part of our mission,” said Cleveland FBI Special Agent in Charge, Gregory Nelsen.  “The conniving conduct and domineering behavior Saunders exerted over his victims is detestable. The FBI is proud to collaborate with our federal, state, and local partners to ensure thorough investigations are conducted and we eliminate criminal behavior that exploits children.”

According to court documents, federal authorities began an investigation into Saunders after receiving information that he was involved in distributing child sexual abuse materials online.  On November 2, 2021, authorities executed a search warrant on Saunders at a residence in Akron.  During the search, agents seized and reviewed the contents of Saunders’ cell phone and observed two videos of Saunders engaged in sexual conduct with a minor.

The case was investigated by the Akron FBI and the Ohio Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force.  This case was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Michael A. Sullivan.



Updated August 8, 2022

Project Safe Childhood