FRESNO, Calif. — Tanner Joel Hernandez-Fields, 21, of Fresno, pleaded guilty Monday to receipt and distribution of child pornography, Acting U.S. Attorney Phillip A. Talbert announced.
According to court documents, between March 19, 2019, and April 12, 2019, Hernandez-Fields did knowingly receive or distribute one or more matters containing any visual depiction of a minor engaged in sexually explicit conduct using an Apple iPhone. Hernandez-Fields received between 150 and 300 images, including video files. These images included depictions of pre‑pubescent minors including material that meets the definition of sadistic or masochistic conduct.
This case is the product of an investigation by Homeland Security Investigations and the Fresno County Sheriff’s Office. Assistant U.S. Attorney Laura D. Withers is prosecuting the case.
Hernandez-Fields is scheduled to be sentenced by U.S. District Judge Dale A. Drozd on Feb.22, 2022. Hernandez-Fields faces a minimum statutory penalty of five years in prison and a maximum of 20 years in prison. The actual sentence, however, will be determined at the discretion of the court after consideration of any applicable statutory factors and the Federal Sentencing Guidelines, which take into account a number of variables.
This case was brought as part of Project Safe Childhood, a nationwide initiative launched in May 2006 by the Department of Justice to combat the growing epidemic of child sexual exploitation and abuse. Led by the United States Attorneys’ Offices and the Criminal Division’s Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section, Project Safe Childhood marshals federal, state, and local resources to locate, apprehend, and prosecute those who sexually exploit children, and to identify and rescue victims. For more information about Project Safe Childhood, please visit www.usdoj.gov/psc. Click on the “resources” tab for information about internet-safety education.