Los Angeles area man sentenced 7 years in federal prison

LOS ANGELES – A Wilmington man was sentenced today to 84 months in federal prison for possessing child pornography and distributing the sexually explicit images of children to other internet users.

Daniel Patrick Diaz, 35, was sentenced by U.S. District Judge S. James Otero., Diaz pleaded guilty in July to four counts of receipt and distribution of child pornography and one count of possession of child pornography.

The case is the result of an investigation by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) Los Angeles.

Diaz admitted in his plea agreement that he used the internet to download and transfer numerous images and videos of child pornography to various digital devices and email accounts. In April 2017, Diaz used the internet messenger application Kik to knowingly distribute files that depicted minors engaged in sexually explicit conduct. Diaz sent the illicit images to an undercover law enforcement officer.

A federal search warrant executed by HSI special agents in May 2017 revealed that Diaz used an email address to receive and distribute child pornography, including sadistic and masochistic content.
In total, Diaz possessed at least 600 images of child pornography.

“The prolific nature of [Diaz’s] fascination with child pornography, including the types of content he possessed, shared, and distributed, is troubling,” the prosecution wrote in its sentencing memorandum, which notes that “his trading, sharing, possession, and distribution of these image and videos only served to continue the harm suffered by the victims.”

This investigation was conducted under HSI’s Operation Predator, an international initiative to protect children from sexual predators. Since the launch of Operation Predator in 2003, HSI has arrested more than 25,000 individuals for crimes against children, including the production and distribution of online child exploitation material, traveling overseas for sex with minors, and sex trafficking of children. In fiscal year 2019, more than 3,500 child predators were arrested by HSI special agents under this initiative and more than 1,000 victims identified or rescued.

HSI encourages the public to report suspected child predators and any suspicious activity through its toll-free Tip Line at 1-866-DHS-2-ICE or by completing its online tip form. Both are staffed around the clock by investigators. From outside the U.S. and Canada, callers should dial 802-872-6199. Hearing impaired users can call TTY 802-872-6196.

Suspected child sexual exploitation or missing children may be reported to the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children, an Operation Predator partner, via its toll-free 24-hour hotline, 1-800-THE-LOST.

For additional information about wanted suspected child predators, download HSI’s Operation Predator smartphone app or visit the online suspect alerts page. HSI is a founding member of the Virtual Global Taskforce, an international alliance of law enforcement agencies and private industry sector partners working together to prevent and deter online child sexual abuse.

This matter was prosecuted by the U.S. Attorney for the Central District of California’s Violent and Organized Crime Section.

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