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Child Exploitation

Teacher sentenced to 30 years in prison for production of child pornography

ALEXANDRIA, Va. – A former teacher at John Adams Elementary School, Justin Coleman, 36, of Falls Church, Va., was sentenced today to 30 years in prison for producing videos of himself engaging in sexually explicit conduct with two unaware prepubescent females. The sentence is the result of an investigation spearheaded by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement's (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) and Italian law enforcement officials.

A fourth grade dual language teacher, Coleman pleaded guilty on Aug. 3, 2011 to two counts of production of child pornography.

"This sentence is a clear demonstration of the consequences awaiting those who engage in the manufacture of child pornography," said John P. Torres, special agent in charge of the ICE HSI field office in Washington, D.C. "ICE HSI, in unity with law enforcement partners in the U.S. and abroad, will continue its efforts to identify and arrest those like Mr. Coleman who maintain a position of trust and use that trust to perpetrate crimes against innocent children."

According to court documents, Coleman was among 900 individuals in the United States identified by Italian law enforcement as part of an overseas child pornography investigation. During an interview with U.S. law enforcement, Coleman admitted viewing child pornography for years, as often as two or three times a week, and preferred images and videos depicting 5- to 12-year-old girls engaging in sexually explicit conduct.

A forensic analysis of digital evidence revealed that Coleman had created at least two videos in which he caused two female minors – who were unaware at the time – to engage in sexually explicit conduct with him. The analysis also found more than 2,500 images of existing child pornography that had been altered by Coleman to depict former, minor female students to appear to be engaging in sexually explicit conduct. Coleman's collection also included at least 74 videos he had recorded in school classrooms that depicted him masturbating behind an unaware student, attempting to obtain erotic videos of female students by filming up their skirts, down their shirts and on their buttocks. Coleman titled some of the movie files with the names of students depicted in the videos. Moreover, Coleman collected a horde of child pornography from the Internet. Overall, the analysis found more than 75,000 images of child pornography and child erotica and 1,000 child pornography movies.

The investigation was conducted by ICE HSI, Fairfax County Police Department, and the Alexandria Police Department, with assistance from the Northern Virginia/District of Columbia Internet Crimes Against Children (ICAC) Task Force.

This case is part of Operation Gondola, a global effort to take down child predators supported by the Virtual Global Taskforce (VGT), an alliance of international law enforcement agencies and private sector partners, working together to combat online child sexual exploitation. Italian authorities identified a website containing more than 480 pornographic images of children. ICE HSI seized the website and sent out leads to law enforcement authorities around the world about individuals accessing the images. To date, there have been 32 criminal arrests, 22 indictments, 6 convictions, 207 seizures around the world as part of Operation Gondola. For more information on the VGT, visit www.virtualglobaltaskforce.com.

ICE encourages the public to report suspected child predators and any suspicious activity through its toll-free hotline at 1-866-DHS-2-ICE or 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 and Exploited Children, an Operation Predator partner, at 1-800-843-5678 or http://www.cybertipline.com.