CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas – A local "English as a Second Language" teacher was sentenced Tuesday to nine years and two months in federal prison, announced U.S. Attorney Kenneth Magidson, Southern District of Texas.
This investigation was conducted jointly by the Corpus Christi Police Department, and U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement's (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations (HSI).
Jesus Orta, 41, was sentenced to 110 months in prison by U.S. District Judge Janis Graham Jack. Orta must also serve a lifetime of supervised release after he completes his prison term. In handing down Orta's sentence, Jack noted his crime and his troubling history of employment, which placed him around children. Jack expressed the need to protect the public from Orta and recognized the harm he inflicted upon the victims whose images he possessed.
Orta was previously employed as a high school teacher, and worked at Mental Health and Mental Retardation State School, and La Raza Runaway shelter. Orta was convicted of possessing child pornography following his guilty plea Nov. 13.
Orta, was arrested by the CCPD Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force after discovering child pornography during a routine domestic disturbance call in Corpus Christi. CCPD officers responded to a complaint made by Orta against his brother for criminal trespassing. During the investigation of the trespassing case, the brother notified police that Orta possessed child pornography. Orta denied the accusations and refused officers' consent to search his home for contraband.
After the officers left the home to write up the criminal trespass warnings, Orta was observed discarding items of child pornography in a community dumpster on the housing complex grounds. Officers gained entry into the home, and several electronic media storage devices were discovered that contained child pornography in addition to the material removed from the dumpster. A subsequent computer forensic analysis was performed on the seized items, and numerous child pornography images and videos were discovered. Orta was arrested and admitted to possessing the child pornography discovered in his home and in the dumpster.
"Anyone who possesses child pornography continually exploits those children," said Brian M. Moskowitz, special agent in charge of HSI Houston. "As a result of the great work by HSI and CCPD and ICAC partners, Mr. Orta won't have the opportunity to exploit anyone for roughly the next nine years."
This investigation was part of Operation Predator, a nationwide HSI initiative to protect children from sexual predators, including those who travel overseas for sex with minors, Internet child pornographers, criminal alien sex offenders and child sex traffickers. HSI encourages the public to report suspected child predators and any suspicious activity through its toll-free hotline at 1-866-347-2423 or by completing its online tip form. Both are staffed around the clock by investigators.
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, 1-800-843-5678.
HSI is a founding member and current chair 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.