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May 13, 2022Corpus Christi, TX, United StatesChild Exploitation

Southeast Texas man gets 30 years for forcing a minor to engage in sexually explicit conduct

CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas – A Texas man was ordered to federal prison May 12 for forcing a minor to engage in sexually explicit conduct following an investigation by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s (ICE), Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) Corpus Christi and the Jim Wells County (Texas) Sheriff’s Department.

Mauricio Ruiz, a 41-year-old resident of Alice, Texas, was sentenced in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Texas. He will also be ordered to register as a sex offender and serve the rest of his life on supervised release following completion of his prison term during which time he will have to comply with numerous requirements designed to restrict his access to children and the internet. Restitution will be determined at a later date.

Ruiz pleaded guilty to the charges Jan. 7.

At the hearing, the court heard emotionally-moving victim impact statements detailing how Ruiz continuously tormented the minor.

At the time of his plea, he admitted to recording illicit videos and images over the course of several years with a minor victim. He raped the minor on multiple occasions and recorded the events. He also threatened to kill members of her family if she ever told anyone.

On Oct. 30, 2020, law enforcement arrested Ruiz at his workplace after learning he was sexually assaulting the girl. The investigation revealed Ruiz possessed more than 34 images and 20 videos of sexual abuse on his work computer.

Ruiz has been and will remain in custody pending transfer to a U.S. Bureau of Prisons facility to be determined in the near future.

Assistant U.S. Attorneys Molly K. Smith and Dennis E. Robinson prosecuted the case.

HSI is a directorate of ICE and the principal investigative arm of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS), responsible for investigating transnational crime and threats, specifically those criminal organizations that exploit the global infrastructure through which international trade, travel, and finance move. HSI’s workforce of over 10,400 employees consists of more than 7,100 special agents assigned to 220 cities throughout the United States, and 80 overseas locations in 53 countries. HSI’s international presence represents DHS’s largest investigative law enforcement presence abroad and one of the largest international footprints in U.S. law enforcement.

Updated: 05/13/2022