You are here

Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Northern District of Texas

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Friday, February 17, 2017

Dallas Man Sentenced to 188 Months in Federal Prison on Federal Child Pornography Conviction

DALLAS — A 31-year-old Dallas, Texas, man, Rafael Almeida Zapata, who pleaded guilty in August 2016 to one count of transporting and shipping child pornography, was sentenced this morning by U.S. District Judge Sidney A. Fitzwater to 188 months in federal prison, announced U.S. Attorney John Parker of the Northern District of Texas.

According to documents filed in the case, in June 2015, Dallas Police Department executed a search warrant at the residence of Zapata in Dallas, Texas. Officers showed Zapata still images of a child pornography video downloaded from an IP address through the ARES peer-to-peer file sharing program. The IP address was linked to Zapata and he admitted that he recognized the still images from a child pornography video he downloaded through ARES. Zapata also admits to possessing more than 600 images of child pornography, some of the images depicted sadistic and masochistic content involving children.

The case was brought as part of Project Safe Childhood, a nationwide initiative, which was launched in May 2006 by the Department of Justice, to combat the growing epidemic of child sexual exploitation and abuse. Led by U.S. Attorney’s 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 sexually exploit children, and identify and rescue victims. For more information about Project Safe Childhood, please visit http://www.justice.gov/psc/. For more information about internet safety education, please visit http://www.justice.gov/psc/ and click on the tab “resources.”

The Federal Bureau of Investigation and Dallas Police Department investigated. Assistant U.S. Attorney Camille Sparks prosecuted.

# # #

Topic(s): 
Project Safe Childhood
Component(s): 
Updated February 17, 2017