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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
District of South Dakota

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Friday, December 3, 2021

Watertown Man found Guilty of Receipt, Distribution,and Transportation of Child Pornography

Acting United States Attorney Dennis R. Holmes announced that Vincent Michael Perez, age 36, of Watertown, South Dakota, was found guilty of one count of Receipt and Distribution of Child Pornography and one count of Transportation of Child Pornography as a result of a federal jury trial in Aberdeen, South Dakota. 

The charges carry a maximum penalty of 40 years in federal prison and/or a $250,000 fine, life of supervised release, and a up to $5,200 special assessment to the Federal Crime Victims Fund. 

Perez was indicted by a federal grand jury on August 17, 2020. 

Between August 7 and August 17, 2019, Perez knowingly received and distributed child pornography using a MeWe social media account.  He also uploaded pornographic images of children to the same social media account.  Law enforcement investigated the case after receiving a cybertip generated by MeWe.  A detective with the Watertown Police Department tracked the history of internet use to Perez.  The MeWe account contained numerous files of child pornography that Perez shared with other MeWe users.

This case was investigated by the Watertown Police Department and the Federal Bureau of Investigation. Assistant U.S. Attorney Jeffrey C. Clapper prosecuted the case.

A presentence investigation was ordered and a sentencing date was set for May, 23, 2022.  The defendant was remanded to the custody of the U.S. Marshals Service.

Topic(s): 
Project Safe Childhood
Component(s): 
Updated December 3, 2021