SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico — U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement's (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) special agents arrested a 50-year-old man at his place of residence Thursday in Humacao, Puerto Rico, for production and possession of child pornography.
According to the criminal complaint, on Oct. 1, 2011, Hector Caceres-Segui induced a 16-year-old female minor, identified as "Jane Doe," to engage in sexually explicit conduct, namely the lascivious exhibition of the genital areas and performance of sexual acts, for the purpose of producing a visual depiction in the form of still images.
"The exploitation of children is quite possibly one of the most heinous crimes of all," said Angel Meléndez, acting special agent in charge of HSI San Juan. "HSI will not tolerate the exploitation of the most vulnerable members of our society and will continue working with our partners in the Puerto Rico Crimes against Children Task Force to investigate those who exploit our children and deprive them of their innocence."
On March 14, 2011, U.S. Magistrate Judge Bruce McGiverin issued a search warrant based on allegations brought by Jane Doe. In essence, Jane Doe alleged that approximately six months previously, Caceres-Segui had taken photos of her while in sexually explicit and naked positions. She further alleged that Caceres-Segui took pictures while she was in the shower.
The next day HSI executed the search warrant at Caceres-Segui's residence, seizing a laptop computer. A preliminary forensic examination of the seized computer revealed several images depicting Jane Doe posing in a sexually explicit manner exposing her genitals. Immediately thereafter, HSI special agents arrested Caceres-Segui.
The investigation is part of HSI's Operation Predator, a nationwide initiative to identify, investigate and arrest those who sexually exploit children; and the Puerto Rico Crimes against Children Task Force (PRCACTF). As part of Operation Predator, HSI encourages the public to report suspected child predators and any suspicious activity through its toll-free hotline at 1-866-347-2423 or its online tip form. Suspected child sexual exploitation or missing children may be reported to the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children, an Operation Predator partner, at 1-800-843-5678 or http://www.cybertipline.com
In response to the need for an island-wide approach to fighting the escalation of predatory crimes against children, HSI San Juan partnered with members of local, state and federal law enforcement, as well as local and state government officials and community leaders, to form the PRCACTF in June 2011.
Through PRCACTF, federal, local and state law enforcement agencies work together with state and local government agencies to effectively pool their resources to jointly investigate all crimes against children in Puerto Rico. Through the task force, law enforcement agents are encouraged to share evidence, ideas, and investigative and forensic tools to ensure the most successful prosecutions possible. As such, PRCACTF allows law enforcement to speak with one unified voice in defense of the children of Puerto Rico.
If convicted, Caceres-Segui faces a mandatory minimum sentence of 15 years in prison and a statutory maximum sentence of 30 years in prison per count.