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Press Release

Salt Lake City Man Sentenced to 180 Months in Prison for Producing and Transporting Child Exploitation Materials

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

SALT LAKE CITY – Joel Lehi Organista, 29, of Salt Lake City, was sentenced by a U.S. District Court Judge to 180 months in federal prison after pleading guilty to two felony counts related to the production and transportation of child pornography. The court ordered the federal prison sentence to run concurrently with a sentence ordered by the State of Utah arising from the same investigation. Organista was also ordered to serve 15 years of supervised release and will be required to register as a sex offender.  

In the plea agreement, Organista admitted to owning a Dropbox account which was used for downloading between 10 and 150 child exploitation images depicting prepubescent minors. In addition, Organista admitted to using Snapchat to contact minor children and soliciting them to perform sexual acts for him via video chat, including an incident which occurred between Organista and a 13 year-old victim, where the victim performed sexual acts for Organista via video chat.

The case originated in January of 2021, after law enforcement received multiple tips that devices and accounts attributed to Organista were receiving and downloading images containing child pornography. A search warrant was executed at Organista’s residence in June of 2021, and Organista has been in custody since that time.

Special Assistant U.S. Attorneys from the Utah Attorney General’s Office and Assistant U.S. Attorneys from the United States Attorney’s Office prosecuted the case. Special Agents from the Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force conducted the investigation.

Updated June 15, 2022

Project Safe Childhood