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Press Release

Rio Rancho Man Sentenced to Eight Years in Prison for Federal Child Sexual Exploitation Conviction

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, District of New Mexico
Defendant Prosecuted Under Project Safe Childhood

ALBUQUERQUE – Joe Medina, 38, of Rio Rancho, N.M., was sentenced this morning in federal court in Albuquerque, N.M., for his conviction for enticing a child to travel in interstate commerce for the purpose of engaging in sexual activity. Medina will serve an eight-year term of imprisonment to be followed by 15 years of supervised release. Medina will be required to register as a sex offender after completing his prison sentence.


Medina’s sentence was announced by Acting U.S. Attorney James D. Tierney, Special Agent in Charge Terry Wade of the FBI’s Albuquerque Division, and Acting Police Chief Paul Rogers of the Rio Rancho Police Department (RRPD).


Medina was arrested in Indianapolis, Ind., on July 20, 2015, based on a federal arrest warrant issued on a criminal complaint filed by the FBI in the U.S. District Court for the District of New Mexico. According to the criminal complaint, on July 9, 2015, the victim’s mother filed a missing person’s report to the RRPD asserting that the victim was missing.


The RRPD’s investigation revealed that Medina took the victim to Denver, Colo., where they boarded a bus. On July 12, 2015, Medina was arrested on a New Mexico state warrant when Medina and the victim were found on a bus that had stopped in Indianapolis.


Medina was indicted on Aug. 11, 2015, and was charged with transporting a minor with intent to engage in criminal sexual activity between July 9, 2015 and July 12, 2015, and production of a visual depiction of a minor engaging in sexually explicit conduct.


On Nov. 7, 2016, Medina pled guilty to a felony information charging him with coercion and enticement. In entering the guilty plea, Medina admitted that from July 9, 2015 through July 12, 2015, he enticed the 16-years-old victim to leave Sandoval County, N.M., with the intent to travel to New York, where Medina intended to engage in illegal sexual activity.


This case was investigated by the Albuquerque office of the FBI, RRPD, Corrales Police Department and the New Mexico Regional Computer Forensic Laboratory. The 13th Judicial District Attorney’s Office, U.S. Marshals Service, Indiana State Police and FBI in Denver and Indianapolis assisted in the investigation.


Assistant U.S. Attorney Sarah Mease prosecuted 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 more information about Project Safe Childhood, please visit.

Updated April 17, 2017

Project Safe Childhood