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Press Release

Pharr resident imprisoned for downloading child pornography on peer-to-peer sharing platform

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Southern District of Texas

McALLEN, Texas – A 32-year-old man has been ordered to federal prison for receipt of child pornography, announced U.S. Attorney Alamdar S. Hamdani.

Vincent Andrew Gutierrez pleaded guilty Oct. 22, 2021.

Chief U.S. District Judge Randy Crane has now ordered Gutierrez to serve 84 months in federal prison. At the hearing, the court found the sadomasochistic enhancement applied as some of the images and videos depicting prepubescent minors being forced to engage in sexual acts with adults.

Gutierrez was further ordered to pay $3,000 in restitution to a known victim and will serve five years on supervised release following completion of his prison term. During that time, he will have to comply with numerous requirements designed to restrict his access to children and the internet. Gutierrez will also be ordered to re-register as a sex offender.

From December 2017 to December 2019, authorities conducted an investigation on BitTorrent, a peer-to-peer file sharing platform. They soon  identified a device downloading child pornography videos and images connected to the IP addresses found to be associated with Guiterrez.  

Law enforcement obtained a search warrant for his home, at which time they seized a laptop and conducted a forensic examination. The investigation revealed the BitTorrent files Gutierrez possessed contained the title PTHC (pre-teen hardcore). PTHC normally refers to images or videos of prepubescent boys and girls engaged in hardcore sexual acts.

The investigation revealed Gutierrez had 412 images and four videos of child pornography.

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

Homeland Security Investigations - Rio Grande Valley Child Exploitation Investigations Task force conducted the investigation.

Assistant U.S. Attorney M. Alexis Garcia 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 link on that page.

Updated April 15, 2024

Project Safe Childhood