Dallas County Man in Federal Custody for Producing Child Pornography
DALLAS—A Hutchins, Texas, man, Servando Vega Cervantes, 24, was arrested last week on a federal complaint charging production of child pornography, announced U.S. Attorney Sarah R. Saldana.
After making his initial appearance in federal court, U.S. Magistrate Judge Irma C. Ramirez ordered that he remain in custody.
According to the affidavit filed with the complaint, the Hutchins Police Department contacted the FBI in May 2014 regarding questionable online communication between an 11-year-old victim, “AP,” and the Facebook user profile of “Laura Ortiz.” The victim’s mother believed the user of the Ortiz profile was actually an adult male, and not a 13-year-old female as described in chat conversations between AP and Ortiz.
The investigation revealed that the user profile “Laura Ortiz” belonged to Cervantes. The investigation also revealed that AP knew Cervantes as “Jordan,” an alias Cervantes used. Further, “AP,” advised that he had sent images of “a body part” and the “front part of his body” to Ortiz, but that he had deleted the images. A forensic preview of Cervantes’ cell phone was conducted and images of prepubescent males were observed on the device.
Anyone who may have been victimized in this case is asked to contact the FB at 972-559-5000.
A federal complaint is a written statement of the essential facts of the offenses charged and must be made under oath before a magistrate judge. A defendant is entitled to the presumption of innocence until proven guilty. The statutory penalty for the offense as charged is not less than 15 or more than 30 years in federal prison, a $250,000 fine and a lifetime of supervised release.
The matter was brought as part of Project Safe Childhood, a nationwide initiative, which was launched in May 2006 by the Department of Justice, to combat the growing epidemic of child sexual exploitation and abuse. Led by U.S. Attorney’s Offices and the Criminal Division’s Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section, Project Safe Childhood marshals federal, state and local resources to better locate, apprehend and prosecute individuals, who sexually exploit children, and identify and rescue victims. For more information about Project Safe Childhood, please visit http://www.justice.gov/psc/. For more information about Internet safety education, please visit http://www.justice.gov/psc/ and click on the tab “resources.”
The Hutchins Police Department and the FBI’s Dallas Child Exploitation Task Force are conducting the investigation. Assistant U.S. Attorney Camille Sparks is in charge of the prosecution.