Grant County Man Facing Federal Child Pornography Charges
Defendant Prosecuted Under Project Safe Childhood
ALBUQUERQUE – Timothy Marquez, 23, of Bayard, N.M., made his initial appearance today in federal court in Las Cruces, N.M., on a criminal complaint charging him with receiving and possessing child pornography. Marquez remains in federal custody pending a preliminary hearing and a detention hearing, both of which are currently scheduled for Sept. 25, 2018.
According to the criminal complaint, the investigation leading to Marquez’s arrest began in Dec. 2017, when the New Mexico State Police (NMSP) followed up on a report from the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children regarding an email address subscribed to Marquez’s Bayard residence that allegedly was used to upload at least 22 files of child pornography. On May 15, 2018, the NMSP executed a search warrant at the residence.
While executing the search warrant, the officers seized several items including several digital media devices. The complaint further alleges that Marquez used online social networking websites to receive and view child pornography.
The statutory penalty for a conviction on a receipt of child pornography charge is a statutory mandatory minimum penalty of five years and maximum penalty of 20 years of imprisonment. The statutory penalty for a conviction on a possession of child pornography charge is a statutory maximum penalty of ten years imprisonment. Charges in criminal complaints are merely accusations and defendants are presumed innocent unless found guilty in a court of law.
This case was investigated by Homeland Security Investigations, the NMSP and the Las Cruces Police Department. Assistant U.S. Attorney Marisa A. Ong of the U.S. Attorney’s Las Cruces Branch Office is prosecuting the case as part of Project Safe Childhood, a nationwide initiative launched in May 2006 by the Department of Justice (DOJ) to combat the growing epidemic of child sexual exploitation and abuse. Led by United States Attorneys’ Offices and DOJ’s 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 exploit children via the Internet, as well as to identify and rescue victims. For information about Project Safe Childhood, please visit http://www.justice.gov/psc/. Individuals with information relating to suspected child predators and suspected child abuse are encouraged to contact the Children’s Advocacy Center at (575) 526-3437, or to contact Homeland Security Investigations at 1-866-DHS-2-ICE.
The case also was brought as a part of the New Mexico Internet Crimes Against Children (ICAC) Task Force’s mission, which is to locate, track, and capture Internet child sexual predators and Internet child pornographers in New Mexico. There are 86 federal, state and local law enforcement agencies associated with the New Mexico ICAC Task Force, which is funded by a grant administered by the New Mexico Attorney General’s Office. Anyone with information relating to suspected child predators and suspected child abuse is encouraged to contact federal or local law enforcement.