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Press Release

Federal jury convicts former Los Lunas High School coach on child pornography charges

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

ALBUQUERQUE – Alexander M.M. Uballez, United States Attorney for the District of New Mexico, and Raul Bujanda, Special Agent in Charge of the FBI Albuquerque Field Office, announced today that a federal jury returned a guilty verdict against Johnathon Bindues after less than three hours of deliberation.  The jury convicted Bindues, 31, of Los Lunas, New Mexico, on one count each of coercion and enticement of a minor and production of child pornography. United States District Judge James O. Browning presided.

A federal grand jury indicted Bindues on March 23, 2022. According to the evidence at trial and other publicly available court records, Bindues used his former position at Los Lunas High School as the coach for the girls’ basketball and track teams to gain special access to minor females. The victim, identified as Jane Doe, was a freshman and a member of the teams Bindues coached. Between September 2020 and June 2021, Bindues exchanged over 17,000 text messages with the victim. Bindues requested nude images of Jane Doe and repeatedly encouraged her to delete text messages. After discovering sexually explicit messages on her daughter’s phone, Jane Doe’s mother reported the relationship to the New Mexico State Police.

“The exploitation of children requires decisive action. Those who seek to prey on children will stop at nothing to lull their victims into a false sense of trust and security,” said Amy Kaskel, FBI Acting Special Agent in Charge. “Thanks to the close collaboration with our partners at the New Mexico State Police, we were able to put a stop to the defendant’s activities. This man, who was entrusted to mentor young people, was in actuality a predator of vulnerable girls. Today’s conviction is one step closer to ensuring he won't be able to victimize children for years to come.” 

“Our children deserve schools and sports free from sexual predation,” said U.S. Attorney Alexander M.M. Uballez. “I stand in awe of Jane Doe’s bravery, fortitude, and resilience. Her strength in facing her abuser and sharing her story is nothing short of heroic. Parents, teachers, and all members of our community must remain vigilant to protect our children from those who abuse their positions of authority.”

Bindues faces a minimum of 10 years and up to life in prison for coercion and enticement and a minimum of 15 years and up to 30 years in prison for production of child pornography. Upon his release from prison, Bindues would be subject to registration as a sex offender.

The FBI and New Mexico State Police investigated this case. Assistant United States Attorneys Jaymie L. Roybal and Patrick E. Cordova are prosecuting the case.

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Updated May 5, 2023

Project Safe Childhood
Press Release Number: 23-101