ALBUQUERQUE—This afternoon, a federal judge in Albuquerque, New Mexico sentenced Joseph Martinez, 53, of Tijeras, New Mexico, to a 15-year term of imprisonment based on his guilty plea to a superseding indictment charging him with production of a visual depiction of a minor engaged in sexually explicit conduct, announced U.S. Attorney Kenneth J. Gonzales. Martinez will serve a three-year term of supervised release after he completes his prison sentence. He also will be required to register as a sex offender.
Martinez, who has been in federal custody since his arrest on August 26, 2009, pleaded guilty to the superseding indictment in February 2012. In entering his guilty plea, Martinez admitted that, between March 1992 and March 1998, he persuaded, induced, enticed, coerced, and encouraged a minor male child (victim) to engage in sexually explicit conduct so that he (Martinez) could produce a visual depiction of that conduct. Martinez admitted that this course of conduct occurred in Bernalillo County, New Mexico.
In his plea agreement, Martinez acknowledged that if he proceeded to trial, the victim would testify that Martinez took sexually explicit photos of him when he was between the ages of 6 and 12 years old. Martinez also acknowledged that an inmate with whom he had contact while in jail would testify that Martinez admitted that police found sexually explicit photographs of the victim, including photographs showing Martinez engaged in sexual activity with the victim. The inmate also would testify that Martinez admitted that Martinez began this pattern of criminal activity when the victim was approximately 5 years old.
The case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Charlyn E. Rees and Presliano Torrez and was investigated by Federal Bureau of Investigation and the Bernalillo County Sheriff’s Office. The case was brought as part of Project Safe Childhood, a nationwide initiative launched in May 2006 by the Department of Justice (DOJ) to combat the growing epidemic of child sexual exploitation and abuse. Led by United States Attorneys’ Offices and DOJ’s 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 via the Internet, as well as to identify and rescue victims. For more information about Project Safe Childhood, please visit www.projectsafechildhood.gov.