Schoolteacher Arrested On Child Pornography Distribution Charges
LAREDO, Texas – Over the weekend, federal and local law enforcement authorities arrested Jorge Valadez, 53, for receiving and distributing videos depicting children engaging in sexually explicit conduct, announced United State Attorney Kenneth Magidson.
The criminal complaint, filed today, charges Valadez - a high school teacher in Laredo - with receipt and distribution of child pornography via the Internet.
Valadez made his initial appearance this morning before U.S. Magistrate Judge Guillermo R. Garcia who ordered Valadez be detained without bond pending further criminal proceedings. He is set for a detention hearing on Sept. 19 at 10:00 a.m.
The complaint alleges that an investigator discovered someone sharing several videos constituting child pornography via the Internet. The investigation allegedly led to the home of Valadez in Laredo. According to the complaint, federal agents then obtained and executed a search warrant on Friday evening, at which time, he was taken into custody.
Valadez allegedly used a peer-to-peer network to share images and videos of child pornography.
If convicted, Valadez faces a minimum of five and up to 40 years in federal prison as well as a maximum fine of $250,000.
This case was brought as part of Project Safe Childhood, a nationwide initiative launched in May 2006 by the Department of Justice to combat the growing epidemic of child sexual exploitation and abuse. Led by the United States Attorneys' Offices and the Criminal Division's Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section, Project Safe Childhood marshals federal, state and local resources to locate, apprehend and prosecute individuals who sexually exploit children, and to identify and rescue victims. For more information about Project Safe Childhood, please visit www.usdoj.gov/psc. For more information about internet safety education, please visit www.usdoj.gov/psc and click on the tab "resources."
The case is being investigated by Homeland Security Investigations with the assistance of the Webb County Sheriff’s Department. Assistant United States Attorney Homero Ramirez is prosecuting the case.
A criminal complaint is a formal accusation of criminal conduct, not evidence.
The defendant is presumed innocent unless and until convicted through due process of law.