Federal Grand Jury Indicts Winona Man in Major ‘Sextortion’ Case
Minneapolis, MN (KROC-AM News) - A federal grand jury has returned an indictment against a Winona man accused of victimizing more than 60 young girls nationwide and abroad.
The US Attorney for Minnesota says 30-year-old Valentin Silva Quintana faces 13 counts of production of child pornography, one count of distribution, and one count of possession of child pornography. He was arraigned on the charges today at the Federal Courthouse in Minneapolis and has been ordered held without bail.
According to court documents, Quintana allegedly "used social media apps, including Snapchat and Instagram, to threaten, sexually manipulate, and exploit more than 60 young girls primarily between 9 and 12 years of age." It's also alleged that he used fake identities and lied about his age in communications with his young victims by posing as another young girl while convincing them to send him sexually explicit photos or videos of themselves.
Federal prosecutors allege Quintana would then threaten to send the image or video to their friends and family unless the victim agreed to "produce evermore graphic sexual images and videos for him." According to the indictment, the crimes occurred between April 2022 and June of last year.
A news release says more than 60 minor girls have been identified as victims, but investigators believe there may be additional victims. Anyone who believes they may have information about this case is asked to contact Homeland Security Investigations toll-free at 1-866-347-2423.
Quintana was previously charged in state court with 10 counts of possession of child pornography, 4 counts of electronic solicitation of children to engage in sexual conduct, and 2 counts of using a minor in a sexual performance. The criminal complaint in Winona County stemmed from an investigation launched in June of last year when authorities received a cyber tip from Verizon concerning child sexual abuse material that was traced to Quintana's cell phone.
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Gallery Credit: Carly Ross