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Child Exploitation

Previously convicted sex offender pleads guilty to new offense of transporting a minor to engage in sex

BALTIMORE - Luis Vallejo, 28, a citizen of Mexico living in Newark, Del., pleaded guilty today to transporting a minor to engage in sex. Vallejo is a convicted sex offender and was wanted in Delaware for failure to register as a sex offender.

The guilty plea was announced by U. S. Attorney for the District of Maryland Rod J. Rosenstein; Special Agent in Charge William Winter of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE); Cecil County Sheriff Barry A. Janney, Sr.; and Cecil County State's Attorney Christopher Eastridge.

"Luis Vallejo is a repeat offender who should have been registered as a sex offender," said U.S. Attorney Rod J. Rosenstein.

According to Vallejo's plea agreement, on Dec. 8, 2008, he picked up a 12-year-old girl from a bus stop in Delaware and took her to a hotel in Elkton, Md., where he sexually assaulted her. The girl's mother contacted police after she was notified that the girl was not at school. Officers learned from another student that Vallejo, known by his alias Jesus Guzman, was renting a room in the house where the girl lived and had picked the girl up from the bus stop. Vallejo dropped the girl off at the bus stop while the police were speaking to her parents. Vallejo was arrested on Jan. 30, 2009, in connection with a traffic stop in New York City.

Vallejo faces a mandatory minimum sentence of 10 years in prison and a maximum sentence life in prison, followed by supervised release up to life. Vallejo is detained and U.S. District Judge J. Frederick Motz has scheduled sentencing for June 18, 2010, at 9:00 a.m.

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 the Criminal Division's Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section (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.projectsafechildhood.gov.

Details about Maryland's program are available at http://www.usdoj.gov/usao/md/Safe-Childhood/index.html.

U. S. Attorney Rod J. Rosenstein thanked Assistant U.S. Attorney Bonnie S. Greenberg, who is prosecuting the case.