FLINT, MI – A New Jersey resident was sentenced to 35 years in federal prison on Friday, September 11th, 2015, following his guilty plea to two counts of sexual exploitation of children, announced United States Attorney Barbara L. McQuade.
Receiving the sentence was Christopher DeKruif, 28-years-old. The sentencing took place before United States District Judge Laurie Michelson in Flint, Michigan.
“It is important that victims report to police when they are extorted by online predators,” McQuade said. “Parents should tell their children they should never be too ashamed to tell them when they are in trouble and need help.”
At the time of his plea, DeKruif admitted that he began an online relationship with the victim, a minor female, in 2012. After obtaining nude pictures of the minor, DeKruif coerced her into photographing explicit sexual acts. DeKruif threatened to disseminate explicit photographs of the victim and to have her and her cousin raped if the victim did not comply. In response to these threats, the victim provided to DeKruif visual depictions of the sexual acts he demanded.
After an extensive multi-jurisdictional FBI investigation, which began in Flint, Michigan, DeKruif was identified and arrested in New Jersey. He was then transferred back to Michigan where he had been charged by the United States Attorney’s Office. Following DeKruif’s arrest by the FBI in New Jersey, additional evidence was obtained from his computer and social networking which revealed that DeKruif victimized at least eight other girls throughout the United States. That conduct is also incorporated into the plea agreement.
The 35-year sentence saves at least nine victims from having to appear and testify in DeKruif’s presence.