Donald Coffey, age 23, and Justin Slattery, age 25, both from Cherokee, have been charged with one count of producing child pornography. The charge is contained in an Indictment unsealed September 29, 2011, in United States District Court in Sioux City.
The Indictment alleges that, in November 2010, Coffey and Slattery used, persuaded, induced, and enticed one or more minors under the age of 18 to engage in sexually explicit conduct for the purpose of producing visual depictions of this conduct.
If convicted, Coffey and Slattery each face a mandatory minimum sentence of 15 years' imprisonment and a possible maximum sentence of 30 years' imprisonment, a $250,000 fine, a $100 special assessment, and at least five years and up to life on supervised release following any imprisonment.
Coffey and Slattery appeared October 25, 2011, in Federal Court in Sioux City and were held without bond. Their next appearance for trial is set for January 3, 2012.
As with any criminal case, a charge is merely an accusation and a defendant is presumed innocent until and unless proven guilty.
This case is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Mark Tremmel and was investigated by the Cherokee Police Department and the Iowa Division of Criminal Investigation.
This case was brought as part of Project Safe Childhood, a nationwide initiative launched in May 2006 by the Department of Justice to combat the growing epidemic of child sexual exploitation and abuse. Led by United States Attorneys' Offices and the Criminal Division's Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section (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.
For more information about Project Safe Childhood, please visit www.projectsafechildhood.gov.