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Press Release

Hudson County Man Admits Producing Images of Child Sexual Abuse

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

NEWARK, N.J. – A Hudson County, New Jersey man, admitted producing images of child pornography, U.S. Attorney Philip R. Sellinger announced today.

Ramon Zelaya, 36, of Union City, pleaded guilty by videoconference on March 9, 2023, before U.S. District Judge Claire C. Cecchi to a second superseding indictment charging him with two counts of sexual exploitation of a child. 

According to documents filed in this case and statements made in court:

Between Aug. 20, 2018 and Sept. 20, 2018, Zelaya used an alias Instagram account to message a minor victim and entice, threaten, and coerce the minor into creating and sending him sexually explicit images and videos. From April 2018 through May 2018, Zelaya used an alias Facebook account to conspire with an individual in the Dominican Republic to sexually abuse the individual’s minor child, create images of that abuse, and send the images to Zelaya. In May 2017, Zelaya used another messaging application to engage an additional underage victim in sexually explicit conversations during which Zelaya requested that the victim take sexually explicit photographs and videos of the victim and send them to him.  

The charge of sexual exploitation of a child carries a mandatory minimum penalty of 15 years in prison, a maximum penalty of 30 years in prison, and a $250,000 fine. Sentencing is scheduled for July 20, 2023.

U.S. Attorney Sellinger credited special agents of the Department of Homeland Security, Homeland Security Investigations, under the direction of Special Agent in Charge Ricky J. Patel, and officers of the Union City Police Department, under the direction of Chief Anthony Facchini, with the investigation leading to the guilty plea.  

The government is represented by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Jamie H. Solano and Sophie E. Reiter of the U.S. Attorney’s Office Cybercrime Unit in Newark.



Updated March 10, 2023

Project Safe Childhood
Press Release Number: 22-055