SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico – After a seven-day jury trial, Francisco Xavier Ortiz-Colón was found guilty of 19 counts, including nine counts of production of child pornography, eight counts of coercion and enticement of a minor to engage in sexual conduct, one count of receipt of child pornography, and one count of possession of child pornography. United States District Court Chief Judge Raúl Arias Marxuach presided over the trial.
According to the Superseding Indictment, from August 2019 through June 2020, Ortiz-Colón induced, enticed, and coerced nine female victims, ranging from nine (9) to fourteen (14) years of age, to engage in sexually explicit conduct for the purpose of producing child pornography. Ortiz‑Colón used multiple Instagram accounts to commit these crimes.
During trial, the government presented evidence to prove that Ortiz-Colón used three Instagram accounts, while impersonating a female user, to procure armpit photos of the minor victims. After obtaining photos of the minors’ armpits and breasts, he used those photos to extort further explicit pornographic photos of the minors. HSI law enforcement agents executed several search warrants of the address where Ortiz-Colón’s Instagram account IP Address was identified and found him in possession of the smartphone through which he exercised control of the Instagram accounts used to extort the minor victims.
“The materials this defendant produced through his Instagram accounts are evidence of the intentional sexual abuse of these minors. The U.S. Attorney’s Office and our law enforcement partners will relentlessly investigate and prosecute the misuse of social media platforms to perpetrate these heinous crimes,” said W. Stephen Muldrow, United States Attorney for the District of Puerto Rico. “I commend the investigative and prosecution team that effectively secured this meaningful conviction.”
“The guilty verdict not only concludes a long emotional week of victim testimonies which impacted everybody present in the courthouse, but most importantly provides closure to all the minors who this predator attacked without mercy,” said HSI Acting Special Agent in Charge Rebecca González‑Ramos. “This man once told one of his victims that he would never get caught by law enforcement. He preyed on our children, believing he was above the law. HSI arrested him and a jury found him guilty. It’s now time for him to face the consequence of his transgressions.”
Assistant U.S. Attorney Jenifer Y. Hernández-Vega, Project Safe Childhood Coordinator in the Child Exploitation and Immigration Unit, prosecuted the case. The defendant faces a mandatory minimum sentence of fifteen (15) years’ imprisonment, and a statutory maximum sentence of 30 years’ incarceration for the production of child pornography counts; a mandatory minimum sentence of ten (10) years’ imprisonment and a maximum penalty of life for the coercion and enticement of a minor counts; and a statutory maximum of twenty (20) years’ imprisonment for the receipt and possession of child pornography counts. The sentencing hearing is scheduled for February 6, 2023, at 10:00 am. The defendant was ordered detained pending sentencing.
# # #