DES MOINES, IA – On March 9, 2020, United States District Court Judge Stephanie M. Rose sentenced Paul Morales Castillo, age 25, of West Des Moines, to 216 months in prison for Transportation of Child Pornography, announced United States Attorney Marc Krickbaum. Morales Castillo was ordered to serve five years of supervised release to follow his prison term, pay $3,000 in restitution, and comply with sex offender registry requirements upon release.
The investigation began in August 2018 when West Des Moines Police received an investigative lead from the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children that a video of child pornography had been uploaded on Morales Castillo’s Facebook account. Following further investigation, West Des Moines Police executed a search warrant at Morales Castillo’s apartment in August 2018. Police seized Morales Castillo’s iPhone which contained hundreds of videos and images of child pornography. The investigation showed that Morales Castillo sent and received videos of child pornography to other persons via the WhatsApp messaging platform during July and August 2018.
This case was investigated by the West Des Moines Police Department, Iowa Department of Criminal Investigation’s Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force, and the FBI Child Exploitation Task Force. This case was prosecuted by the United States Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of Iowa.