The following is a press release issued by the U.S. Attorney's Office of the Middle District of Florida on Thursday, August 25, 2022.
Tampa, Florida – U.S. District Judge Mary S. Scriven has sentenced Aby Raul Rivera Torres (33, Galveston, Texas) to life in federal prison for production, distribution, and possession of child sex abuse material. The court also ordered Torres to forfeit the electronic devices he had used in the commission of the offense. Restitution for the victims will be determined at a later date. Torres was found guilty on May 23, 2022, following a bench trial.
According to court documents, Torres was a member of an online social media group dedicated to discussing incestual child sexual abuse and sharing child sex abuse material with group members. Between July 20 and August 2, 2021, Torres distributed to the group 12 images of child sex abuse material that he had produced of 8-year-old Minor Victim 1, who had been in his care and custody.
On November 13, 2021, the FBI executed a search warrant at Torres’s residence in Spring Hill, Florida and seized his cellphone. When the law enforcement officers arrived at the residence, Torres was home alone with three minor children, including Minor Victim 1. Minor Victim 1 later disclosed to law enforcement officers that Torres had sexually assaulted Minor Victim 1 that same day. The FBI also obtained a search warrant for Torres’ cellphone. A forensic analysis of the cellphone revealed Torres was in possession of approximately 667 images of child sex abuse material, including images depicting young girls, as young as four years old, being sexually abused.
At the time of his federal arrest, Torres had been released on bond by the State of Texas, where he was pending trial for aggravated sexual abuse of a child, making a terroristic threat against a family member, and multiple charges of possession of child pornography. In the fall of 2020, Torres relocated to Tampa after being released from state custody for aggravated sexual abuse of a child, where he is alleged to have committed the same offense against another minor child who had been in his care and custody.
This case was investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation (Tampa and Oklahoma City Divisions), with assistance from the Hernando County Sheriff’s Office. It was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Lisa M. Thelwell.
This is another case 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 the United States Attorneys’ Offices and the Criminal Division’s Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section, Project Safe Childhood marshals federal, state, and local resources to locate, apprehend, and prosecute individuals who sexually exploit children, and to identify and rescue victims. For more information about Project Safe Childhood, please visit www.justice.gov/psc.