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Child Exploitation
12/05/2008

ICE nabs Puerto Rican couple for possession of child porn and sexual exploitation of children

SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico-A 47-year-old man and 23-year-old woman were arrested this morning in Aguadilla and San Sebastian, Puerto Rico for possession and production of child pornography following a U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) investigation.

ICE special agents arrested Manuel Ortiz Montalvo and Joseli Perez Borges after a search of their residence on Oct. 23, 2008 resulted in the seizure of a computer and other electronic storage media devices. A subsequent forensic analysis of the seized material revealed images containing explicit images of child pornography.

"The sexual exploitation and abuse of a child is one of the most heinous acts imaginable," said Manuel Oyola Torres, special agent in charge of the ICE Office of Investigations in Puerto Rico. "ICE will continue to work in conjunction with the U.S. Attorney's Office and our local law enforcement partners to protect our communities from sexual predators. Simply put, we have an obligation to protect those who cannot protect themselves."

Manufacturing, distributing and possessing child pornography carries a penalty of 30, 20 or 10 years in prison, respectively. The manufacturing of child pornography also carries a mandatory minimum sentence of 15 years.

Assistant United States Attorney Jenifer Gonzalez is in charge of the prosecution of this case.

These arrests were part of a nationwide initiative known as Operation Predator. Operation Predator protects our children from sexual predators, including those who travel across continents to have sex with minors. Internet child pornographers and criminal alien sex offenders and child traffickers are also a priority for ICE. Since the initiative was launched in July of 2003, there have been more than 11,500 individuals arrested nationwide.

ICE encourages anyone who wants to report suspicious activity of suspected child predators and suspicious activity through our toll-free hotline at 1-866-DHS-2ICE. Investigators staff this hotline around the clock.

Suspected child sexual exploitation or missing children may be reported to the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children, an Operation Predator partner, at 1-800-843-5678 or www.cybertipline.com