By: Yuritza Arroyo
Passaic County authorities announced the arrest of Jorge Avila Velez, 43, of Passaic, following an investigation by the Passaic County Sheriff’s Office Internet Crime Against Children Task Force in conjunction with the Passaic County Prosecutor’s Office Special Victims Unit.
According to officials, Mr. Avila Velez was arrested on June 6, 2023, by members of the Passaic County Sheriff’s Office Internet Crime Against Children Task Force.
Officials say the arrest followed an investigation that identified Mr. Avila Velez as the individual allegedly responsible for using Google and WhatsApp to distribute, maintain on a file-sharing platform, and possess four images and 465 videos that depicted child sexual abuse material.
Mr. Avila Velez was charged with one count of Endangering the Welfare of Children for maintaining child sexual abuse materials in an online file-sharing program, a crime of the first degree; one count of Endangering the Welfare of Children for distributing child sexual abuse materials, a crime of the second degree; and one count of Endangering the Welfare of Children for possession of explicit images of minors.
According to authorities, the sentencing exposure for the listed first-degree offense is between ten to twenty years in New Jersey State Prison and includes a ten-year period of parole ineligibility.
Authorities say the sentencing exposure for the second-degree distribution offense is five to ten years in New Jersey State Prison and includes a five-year period of parole ineligibility.
The sentencing exposure for the second-degree possession offense is five to ten years in New Jersey State Prison and requires a mandatory sentence of imprisonment.
If convicted, Mr. Avila Velez would also be required to register pursuant to Megan’s Law and is eligible to be sentenced to parole supervision for life.
According to authorities, Mr. Avila Velez was also charged with two counts of Obstruction of the Administration of Justice, for which the sentencing exposure is up to eighteen months in New Jersey State Prison.
Mr. Avila Velez was charged on a warrant complaint and is currently detained at the Passaic County Jail.
The State has filed a motion for pre-trial detention, and a Superior Court Judge will hear that motion on a date and time to be determined by the Court.