22-year-old gets over 17 years for distributing child pornography in cyber-bullying case
In a chilling case highlighting the dangers of online harassment and the weaponization of social media, Lorenzo Arana was sentenced to 210 months in prison for the distribution of child pornography.
Arana’s malicious actions included circulating explicit videos of a 12-year-old girl on various social media platforms.
U.S. District Judge Gary R. Brown handed down the sentence in Central Islip after Arana pleaded guilty to the charge in November 2022. The announcement came from Breon Peace, the United States attorney for the Eastern District of New York, and Ivan J. Arvelo, the special agent-in-charge for Homeland Security Investigations in New York (HSI).
U.S. Attorney Peace remarked on the severity and cruelty of the crime, noting the profound impact on vulnerable minors and urging parents to educate their children about the potential dangers of online communication.
“Today’s sentence brings justice to a vulnerable young girl and many others like her throughout the country who were terrorized and harmed by the defendant’s weaponization of social media to target them for undeserved cruelty, vulgarity and abuse,” said U.S. Attorney Peace.
“It will always be a priority of this office to protect children and hold online predators accountable for their actions,” Peace continued. “My message to parents and caregivers is please talk to your children about the dangers of communicating online with strangers who may exploit them and to seek help from a trusted adult if they are being threatened.”
Known online by the alias “Lorenzo Blake,” Arana had a notorious history of using social media platforms like Facebook, Instagram, TikTok, Snapchat and YouTube to target, harass and exploit underage girls.
In several instances, Arana blackmailed the minors with compromising material he had previously solicited, threatening public distribution if they refused his advances or requests.
The conviction that led to Arana’s sentence was tied to an incident from September 2020. After procuring explicit material from a minor referred to as “Jane Doe #2”, Arana callously shared the videos with her peers, leading to a suicide attempt by the victim.
Text messages recovered from the young victim’s phone exposed the depths of Arana’s malice, revealing messages in which he encouraged her to take her own life.
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