Internet Blackmailer Targeted Teens

girl in pink shirt sitting on couch

A Virginia man will spend the next three decades in prison after he spent years targeting preteen and teenage victims online. The man blackmailed multiple teens and preteen victims into creating sexually explicit images and sending them to him.

“The defendant manipulated, coerced, and tormented children across the country by using an arsenal of repulsive tactics, which subjected these vulnerable minors to trauma that will painfully stay with them and their families forever,” said Raj Parekh, Acting U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Virginia. “While no amount of jail time can ever undo the devastating physical and emotional damage the defendant has caused, we hope that today’s sentence will provide some measure of justice for the victims.”

The creep’s name is Filippo Parlagreco. Back in 2017, the 36-year-old man posed as a 14-year-old online and convinced a 14-year-old to send him explicit photographs. He then posted the photos online and told the child he would only remove them if she send him more images. The girl attempted to block him but he spent years contacting her and demanding more pictures.

“This case demonstrates the grave dangers that children face online, where predators can pretend to be anyone and use sophisticated tactics to exploit the most vulnerable among us,” said Acting Assistant Attorney General Nicholas L. McQuaid of the Justice Department’s Criminal Division. “The defendant used an array of technology to target and torment innocent children for his own perverse pleasure, but as this prosecution shows, the Department of Justice will continue to marshal its resources to pursue these predators and combat this epidemic.”

Once authorities identified Parlagreco, they discovered he’d targeted at least 13 other children the same way. He also traded images of child sexual abuse with other predators online. Law enforcement discovered hundreds of images and videos of these acts on his phone.

It’s important for parents to talk to children and remind them to never share sexually explicit images with anyone they meet online. Make sure they know to come to you if anyone asks them for that type of material. And also that they know if they fall victim to a predator like this, they won’t be in trouble if they come to you.

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