Feb. 21, 2019 By Laura Hanrahan
A LeFrak City resident was sentenced today to 15 years in prison for using social media to solicit child porn online, according to the U.S. Attorney’s office for the Eastern District of New York.
Keith Liwanag, 27, was sentenced after pleading guilty in June of last year to sexual exploitation of a child after it was discovered that he had used a Facebook account to direct women in the Philippines to engage in sexual acts with children in exchange for money in 2016. The abuse would be recorded and sent to Liwanag over Facebook’s messaging service.
Liwanag was found to be in possession of more than 50 recorded video calls between himself and the women who sexually abused the children, the Brooklyn federal court said. Further investigation revealed that Liwanag would go on to share these videos online.
“This is a just sentence for a defendant who used technology to victimize vulnerable children half a world away,” said Richard Donoghue, U.S. Attorney for ESDNY. “Protecting children from sexual exploitation will always be a priority of this Office.”
According to court documents, Liwanag sent several messages to women asking them to perform sex acts on children as part of a “show,” even “enticing a mother to sexually abuse her own son for his pleasure” between September and October 2016.
“His use of women in the Philippines to exploit children for the production of child pornography is not just criminal, it’s evil,” said Angel M. Melendez, an agent at Homeland Security Investigations, one of several agencies involved in the case. “Because of the great work of law enforcement and the prosecutor’s office, he will now serve 15 years for his unfathomable acts, facing the full justice of his actions behind bars.”
Liwanag will be required to register as a sex offender after completing his sentence.