Cases & Deals

Child pornography victim recovers $93,532.57 in restitution

Client(s) L. H.

Jones Day represented a child pornography victim and her family in obtaining a $93,532.57 criminal restitution award on July 25. Jones Day prepared a submission to the Assistant United States Attorney responsible for prosecuting the case and appeared on behalf of the victim at the sentencing hearing. The defendant, Austin Jones, is a singer who rose to fame on YouTube. Jones used Facebook's private messaging feature and Apple's iMessage to request and receive numerous videos from young female fans qualifying as child pornography. He pled guilty to one count of receipt of child pornography in violation of 18 U.S.C. § 2252A(a)(2)(A), and he was sentenced in the Northern District of Illinois.

Before Jones Day began representing the victim, her family and the prosecutor had estimated they would only recover a minimal amount of restitution for lost wages and travel expenses. The team determined that the victim was entitled to a far greater award under the recently amended Mandatory Restitution for Sexual Exploitation Act (18 U.S.C. § 2259). With the help of an expert who testified to both the harm the victim had already suffered and her projected future losses, the team requested (and was awarded) restitution for the victim's father's lost income, travel expenses related to her care, the victim's future medical expenses, and her other future losses. Using the recommendations of the Jones Day team, Judge John Z. Lee also awarded the other five victims restitution for their future expenses, totaling nearly $450,000.

USA v. Jones, No. 1-17-cr-00417 (N.D. Ill.)