Vidales sentenced to 30 years – Pleasanton Express

Armando A Vidales Jr.
A judge sentenced Armando Anthony Vidales Jr., 25, Poteet, to 30 years in prison for producing child sexual abuse material following an investigation conducted by Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) with the help of the Texas Office of the Attorney General. The Atascosa County Sheriff’s Office assisted the Texas Office of the Attorney General’s Criminal Investigation Division in the execution of a search warrant for Vidales on March 5, 2021, in Atascosa County.
Vidales, will serve 360 months in federal prison followed by 20 years of supervised release. The judge also ordered him to pay $5,000 in restitution. Vidales plead guilty March 31.
“The significant sentence imposed on Armando Anthony Vidales sends a clear message that there are serious consequences for those who exploit children. Vidales will serve the next 30 years in federal prison for his incomprehensible acts,” said Craig Larrabee, acting special agent in charge of HSI San Antonio. “We remain committed to working with our law enforcement partners to aggressively pursue those who victimize the most vulnerable members of our society: our children.”
According to court documents, Vidales uploaded and emailed multiple files of child sexual abuse material from one personal email account to another. The email service provider generated a CyberTipline Report through the National Exploited Children.
Vidales was held in custody pending transfer to a U.S. Bureau of Prisons facility. Assistant U.S. Attorney Bettina Richardson, Western District of Texas, prosecuted the case.
Vidales was 23, when the ACSO arrested him. At that time, Vidales was charged with two counts of Possession with Intent to Promote Child Pornography, both second degree felonies, and was booked into the Atascosa County Jail.
Evidence found at the residence led Atascosa County Sheriff’s Investigators to initiate a Sexual Assault of a Child investigation.
Vidales was taken into custody in San Antonio at a law enforcement academy in which he was enrolled.
His bonds were set at $160,000 by J.P. Pct. 4 Jackie Bodden. He was released on bond with extensive conditions, including:
No contact direct or indirect with any of the victims, electronic monitoring at the defendant’s own expense, installation of SCRAM GPS ankle monitor and a provision to not come into contact with a child younger than 18 years of age without the child’s parent or guardian present.
HSI encourages the public to report suspected child predators and any suspicious activity through its toll-free tip line at 866- 347-2423 or by completing its online tip form. Both are staffed around the clock. From outside the United States and Canada, callers should dial 802- 872-6199. Hearing impaired users may call TTY 802-872-6196.
HSI takes a victim-centered approach to child exploitation investigations by working to identify, rescue and stabilize victims. HSI works in partnership with the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children, ICAC partners, and other federal, state and local agencies to help solve cases and rescue sexually exploited children. You can report suspected child sexual exploitation or missing children to the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children’s toll-free, 24-hour hotline at 800-THE-LOST.
HSI is a founding member of the Virtual Global Taskforce, an international alliance of law enforcement agencies and private industry sector partners working together to prevent and deter online child sexual abuse.
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