NEW ORLEANS—Quentin Kittel, 22, a resident of Slidell, Louisiana, pleaded guilty today as charged before United States District Judge Jane Triche Milazzo to crimes involving the sexual exploitation of children, announced United States Attorney Jim Letten. Specifically, Kittel pleaded guilty to two-counts of receiving images depicting the sexual exploitation and victimization of children.
According to courts documents, beginning in fall 2009, Kittel met “Minor Victim 1,” then a 16-year-old female, and began communicating with her via text message. Soon after meeting, Kittel requested and encouraged Minor Victim 1 to take sexually explicit pictures of herself and send them to him via text message, which she did. Kittel then sent the images from his cell phone to his personal e-mail account.
Kittel engaged in similar conduct once again, this time in 2011, with “Minor Victim 2,” a 12-year-old female. After obtaining Minor Victim 2’s cellular telephone number, Kittel began texting her. Beginning in early 2011, and continuing through October 2011, on multiple occasions Kittel requested and encouraged Minor Victim 2 to take sexually explicit pictures of herself and send them to him via text message. In his requests, Kittel described in detail how he wanted Minor Victim 2 to pose and what he wanted her to do in the photos. Again, after receiving the images on his cell phone, Kittel sent them to his personal e-mail account.
Sentencing has been scheduled for August 2, 2012. For each of the two counts for which Kittel was convicted, he faces a maximum sentence of 20 years in prison, a $250,000 fine, and a lifetime term of supervised release. Kittel can also be required to register as a sex offender.
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 United States Attorneys’ Offices and the Criminal Division’s Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section, Project Safe Childhood marshals federal, state, and local resources to better locate, apprehend, and prosecute individuals who exploit children, and to identify and rescue victims. For more information about Project Safe Childhood, please visit www.usdoj.gov/psc. For more information about Internet safety education, please visit www.usdoj.gov/psc and click on the tab “Resources.”
This case was investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation. The prosecution of this case is being handled by Assistant United States Attorney Jordan Ginsberg.