Spokane, Washington – On February 16, 2023, United States District Court Judge Thomas O. Rice sentenced Miguel Antonio Mondaca, 25, of Phoenix, Arizona, to 360 months in federal prison following a jury’s guilty verdicts on charges of Child Sex Trafficking, Online Enticement, and Child Pornography Production and Receipt. Describing Mondaca’s victimization of a 12-year-old girl in the Spokane area as “egregious,” Judge Rice also imposed a lifetime of federal supervision upon Mondaca’s release from custody, and awarded the victim $30,000 in restitution for therapy.
According to court documents and proceedings, Mondaca, who lived in Phoenix, communicated in extremely graphic sexual ways with his minor victim, who was in the Spokane area. After learning her true name and the fact that she was a minor, Mondaca convinced his victim to disclose exactly where she lived, and created a detailed plan to kidnap her from her home in order to rape and traffic her. He explained to her exactly how child sex trafficking “works,” telling her that he would advertise her online to “customers” for sex and then take her to a “spot” and leave her there to be sexually assaulted.
In connection with his plans, Mondaca bought a plane ticket from Phoenix to Spokane, posted images of his itinerary online, and told his minor victim that he was coming to kidnap and rape her on the specific dates of his planned travel. When officers with the Washington State Patrol and Homeland Security Investigations learned that Mondaca had purchased the plane ticket to travel to Spokane, they sought a nationwide extraditable warrant for his arrest. Officers in Spokane worked closely with their law enforcement colleagues in Phoenix to obtain and execute search warrants for Mondaca’s residence. In his digital devices, officers recovered the images and communications he had solicited from his primary victim. They also discovered a large collection of other child pornography images that Mondaca had downloaded from the Internet, including images depicting bestiality, the sexual abuse of toddlers, and other sexual violations of children.
“As a parent, I am chilled by the manipulative and exploitative conduct for which Mr. Mondaca has now been convicted by a jury and sentenced by the Court,” said United States Attorney Vanessa R. Waldref. “My office takes sexual exploitation extremely seriously, whether online or in-person. Children in the Eastern District and elsewhere deserve to live in a world free from sexual predators. Today’s significant sentence will protect our community, and send a message to those who seek to harm children: justice is coming.”
U.S. Attorney Waldref also praised the collaborative efforts of state, local, and federal law enforcement. “This investigation was successful because of the incredibly diligent teamwork of Washington State Patrol and Homeland Security Investigations, with assists from the Phoenix Police Department and numerous other law enforcement agencies. I commend Assistant United States Attorneys Alison Gregoire and Ann Wick, who tried the case to the jury with professionalism and sensitivity for the victim and her family. I also commend Assistant United States Attorney and Project Safe Childhood Coordinator David Herzog, who presented the indictment to the grand jury and handled today’s sentencing on behalf of the United States. Finally, I sincerely thank Jolene Jones and Petra Frandsen, the U.S. Attorney’s Office’s victim witness specialists, for their tireless work on behalf of the victims of crime, in this case and so many others.”
The case was investigated by Washington State Patrol, Homeland Security Investigations, and the Phoenix Police Department. Assistant United States Attorneys Alison Gregoire, Ann Wick, and David Herzog represented the United States.