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Child Exploitation

Virginia woman sentenced to 15 years for producing child pornography

NORFOLK, Va. — A Suffolk woman was sentenced Monday to 15 years in federal prison, followed by a lifetime of supervised release, for producing child pornography and obstructing justice. The sentence resulted from an investigation by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations (HSI).

According to court documents, Sierra Danyelle Halsey, 23, became involved in the conspiracy when she was contacted by co-conspirator Robert Harold Scott Jr. under his assumed online identity of "Mike Pyro." Scott routinely communicated with women in and around the Hampton Roads area to set up sex parties, where the women would work as prostitutes and Scott would pay them for their services. In reality, Scott would not pay them, and he would, on occasion, extort the women by threatening to publish sexually explicit videos of them online.

In addition to the adult parties, Scott conspired with and produced child pornography with several different women, including Halsey. Law enforcement found that, when discussing the sex parties, Scott would request these women produce child pornography. He was very specific regarding the sex acts he wanted on camera. Halsey complied in return for the promise of money. She produced child pornography on several occasions with a 1-year-old and a 5-year-old child. Halsey also obstructed justice by deleting electronic evidence at the behest of Scott after he was arrested in fall 2018.

Halsey pleaded guilty May 5.

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.

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 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.