A Madera County, California, woman was sentenced today to 200 months in prison, followed by 180 months of supervised release, for aiding and abetting the production of child pornography, announced Assistant Attorney General Brian A. Benczkowski of the Justice Department’s Criminal Division and U.S. Attorney McGregor W. Scott of the Eastern District of California.
Ashley Maddox, 32, was sentenced by U.S. District Judge Dale A. Drozd of the Eastern District of California. According to admissions made in connection with her guilty plea on May 24, 2019, the defendant came to the attention of law enforcement in Fort Pierce, Florida, in the course of their investigation into an offender there. The investigation revealed that beginning in or about November 2015, Maddox had communicated with that offender, via the internet and mobile-based applications, about their mutual sexual interest in minors. A forensic examination of that individual’s cellular phone recovered Kik chat conversations between them. Over the course of these communications, Maddox requested that this individual send her images and video recordings in which he sexually abused a minor victim in his care. To encourage this individual to produce such images, Maddox requested that he commit specific acts, and indicated that the images she had received from him had aroused her. Maddox also sent him sexually explicit images of a minor to whom she had access.
The investigation was conducted by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s Homeland Security Investigations in Fort Pierce, Florida, and Fresno, California. Trial Attorney Nadia C. Prinz of the Criminal Division’s Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section (CEOS) and Assistant U.S. Attorney David L. Gappa of the Eastern District of California prosecuted the case.
This case was brought as part of Project Safe Childhood, a nationwide initiative to combat the growing epidemic of child sexual exploitation and abuse launched in May 2006 by the Department of Justice. Led by U.S. Attorneys’ Offices and CEOS, 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