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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
District of Vermont

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Wednesday, March 30, 2022

Former Nurse Sentenced to 27 Years in Prison for Murder for Hire, Conspiracy to Kidnap and Murder Person Overseas, and Child Pornography Offenses

The Office of the United States Attorney for the District of Vermont stated that Sean Fiore, 38, of Burlington, Vermont, was sentenced today in United States District Court in Burlington, Vermont to 27 years in prison following his guilty pleas to the following charges: murder for hire, conspiracy to kidnap and murder a person overseas, conspiracy to produce child pornography, and possession of child pornography.  U.S. District Judge Christina Reiss also ordered Fiore to serve a lifetime term of supervised release, pay restitution to nine victims of his crimes, and to pay a $400 special assessment.

According to court records, in September 2018, Fiore, located in Vermont, communicated over WhatsApp with a woman who was in Venezuela.  Both used aliases.  The WhatsApp communications were about Fiore’s interest in purchasing a video depicting the torture of a kidnapped child, who was referred to as a “slave.”  Fiore ultimately paid $600 in Amazon gift cards for the video.  Fiore sent specific instructions on what abuse he wished to see inflicted on the child.  On October 3, 2018, Fiore received a hyperlink to a video file depicting sadistic abuse of a prepubescent boy consistent with Fiore’s specifications.     

Fiore and the woman subsequently used WhatsApp to discuss Fiore’s desire to purchase another video which showed the torture and killing of another kidnapped “slave.”  Fiore sent specifications for the types of physical abuse, humiliation, and manner of death he wished to see in the video.  In December 2018, Fiore agreed to pay $4,000 for the second video.  In April 2019, Fiore received a hyperlink to a 58-minute video file depicting the requested sadistic abuse and possible death of an adult male. 

Fiore also possessed videos and other images depicting minors engaging in sexually explicit conduct, including depictions of sadistic sexual abuse.  

United States Attorney Nikolas P. Kerest said, “It is difficult to imagine more depraved conduct than that of Sean Fiore. We are grateful for the tremendous support and teamwork provided by Homeland Security Investigations and Vermont’s Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force during the investigation of this case. These investigators were indispensable in uncovering Fiore’s heinous crimes. We are also thankful for our Department of Justice partners, including the DOJ Human Rights and Special Prosecutions Section, the DOJ Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section, and the DOJ Office of International Affairs, who helped bring Fiore to justice. This office along with its partners will continue to prioritize protecting the vulnerable and prosecuting dangerous offenders such as Fiore.” 

“The defendant paid for and scripted unspeakably vile and horrific videos of a child being tormented, and an adult sadistically abused,” said Assistant Attorney General Kenneth A. Polite Jr. of the Justice Department’s Criminal Division. “This prosecution, in partnership with the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Vermont and Homeland Security Investigations, sends a clear message that these reprehensible acts will not go unanswered or unpunished.”  

“Fiore committed some of the darkest, most heinous deeds humanity can imagine,” said Special Agent in Charge Matthew Millhollin for Homeland Security Investigations in New England. “Today’s sentence ensures that he will be locked away, unable to repeat the depraved crimes he has admitted to. We are grateful to our partners here in Vermont and around the world who worked tirelessly alongside us to investigate and prosecute this case.”  

Moraima Escarlet Vasquez Flores, 39, of Colombia, the woman accused of sending Fiore the videos and of conspiring with him to produce child pornography, is charged with conspiracy to murder and kidnap a person in a foreign country, conspiracy to produce child pornography, production of child pornography, and aiding and abetting the receipt of child pornography.  Vasquez Flores was arrested in Colombia on September 18, 2020, and the government is seeking her extradition to the United States.  The charges against Vasquez Flores are merely allegations and she is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt in a court of law.

Barbara A. Masterson, Assistant U.S. Attorney for the District of Vermont, Patrick Jasperse, Trial Attorney with the Department of Justice’s Human Rights and Special Prosecutions Section, and Eduardo Palomo, Trial Attorney with the Department of Justice’s Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section, represent the government.  Maryanne E. Kampmann, Esq. and Robert L. Sussman, Esq. of Stetler, Allen, Kampmann & Sussman, PLLC, represent Fiore. 
 
This case was brought as part of Project Safe Childhood, a nationwide initiative to combat the growing epidemic of child sexual exploitation and abuse launched in May 2006 by the Department of Justice. Led by U.S. Attorneys’ Offices and Child Exploitation Obscenity Section, Criminal Division (CEOS), Project Safe Childhood marshals federal, state and local resources to better locate, apprehend and prosecute individuals  who exploit children via the Internet, as well as to identify and rescue victims. For more information about Project Safe Childhood, please visit www.justice.gov/psc.

Topic(s): 
Project Safe Childhood
Violent Crime
Component(s): 
Updated March 30, 2022