BENTON – A federal judge in southern Illinois sentenced an Indiana man to 20 years’ imprisonment after he admitted to traveling across state lines with intent to engage in sexual activity with a minor.

Diego A. Montes-Roldan, 27, of Indianapolis, pleaded guilty in February to one count of travel with intent to engage in illicit sexual conduct. Following imprisonment, he will serve a lifetime term of supervised release.

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“Predators are actively scouting for victims online, but quick detection by parents and strong action by law enforcement can help to safeguard children,” said U.S. Attorney Rachelle Aud Crowe. “The U.S. Attorney’s Office is proud to work with our partners to help keep children safe.”

According to court documents, Montes-Roldan’s charges stem from conversations he had via text message with two 14-year-old victims he met through social media. In separate conversations, Montes-Roldan discussed having sexual intercourse with both victims.

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“The FBI prioritizes protecting our most vulnerable and, in this case, combined law enforcement efforts saved young victims from irreparable harm,” said FBI Springfield Field Office Acting Special Agent in Charge Joe Rodriguez. “This sentence puts Montes-Roldan behind bars for a significant amount of time and prevents further exploitation of innocent children.”

In October 2021, police received reports of Montes-Roldan’s conversations with one of the minors. Following an FBI investigation, he was arrested by law enforcement.

“Preying on youth is a diabolical crime and ISP is relentless when it comes to investigating predators,” said ISP Director Brendan F. Kelly. “ISP will continue to work with our law enforcement partners at all levels to identify child predators and successfully bring them to justice."

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.

The FBI Springfield Field Office led the investigation, with assistance from the Illinois State Police Division of Criminal Investigation and the Porter County, Indiana, Sheriff’s Office. Assistant U.S. Attorney Casey Bloodworth prosecuted the case.

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