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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Southern District of Texas

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Friday, April 23, 2021

Houston man sent to prison for possessing over 56,000 images of child pornography

HOUSTON – A 41-year-old Houston-area man has been ordered to federal prison for 40 years after producing videos of his sexual abuse of a minor, possession of child pornography, announced Acting U.S. Attorney Jennifer B. Lowery.

Miguel Rivera pleaded guilty Oct. 30, 2020, to production, receipt and possession of child pornography.

Today, U.S. District Judge Charles Eskridge ordered him to serve a 480-month sentence. The court also heard additional information today including a statement from the victim detailing how Rivera’s heinous acts affected her childhood and to this day. In handing down the sentence, the court noted the seriousness of the offense, promoting respect for the law and deterrence of such criminal conduct. Rivera will serve the rest of his life on supervised release following completion of his prison term, during which time he will have to comply with numerous requirements designed to restrict his access to children and the internet. He will also be ordered to register as a sex offender.

In June 2019, law enforcement located an IP address with a folder containing child pornography using a publicly available peer-to-peer file-sharing network. The IP address was linked to Rivera and his residence.

Forensic analysis resulted in the discovery of 56,250 images of child pornography on his electronic devices. Approximately 412 videos were over five minutes in length, the longest of which was nearly an hour.  

Rivera also produced 3,200 images and over 160 videos of sexually abusing a minor while the child was unconscious. 

He admitted he had been downloading child pornography for at least a decade.

Rivera has been and will remain in custody pending transfer to a U.S. Bureau of Prisons facility to be determined in the near future.

The FBI conducted the investigation.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Zahra Jivani Fenelon prosecuted the case, which was brought as part of Project Safe Childhood (PSC), a nationwide initiative the Department of Justice (DOJ) launched in May 2006 to combat the growing epidemic of child sexual exploitation and abuse. U.S. Attorneys' Offices and the Criminal Division's Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section leads PSC, which marshals federal, state and local resources to locate, apprehend and prosecute individuals who sexually exploit children and identifies and rescues victims. For more information about PSC, please visit DOJ’s PSC page. For more information about internet safety education, please visit the resources tab on that page.

Topic(s): 
Project Safe Childhood
Component(s): 
Updated April 23, 2021