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Sex Crimes

Darian Tillman: Suspect 'Sextorted' Teen Into Taking, Sending Nude Images

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Mon, Aug 19, 2013 at 12:35 PM

click to enlarge FILE PHOTO BY PHIL CAMPBELL / FLICKR.
  • File photo by Phil Campbell / Flickr.
Federal authorities say a Corona man coerced underage victims to photograph themselves in sexually explicit ways and then send the images to him via the internet.

Darian Anthony Tillman, 21, pleaded guilty today to "enticement of a minor to engage in sexual activity" as part of a deal with federal prosecutors, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement officials said.

He was one of 12 defendants charged in separate cases for alleged sex crimes against minors, ICE announced:

Prosecutors say Tillman targeted at least four boys as part of his scheme. According to an ICE statement:

Darian Anthony Tillman, 21, has signed a plea agreement admitting that he falsely identified himself as "Taylor Popov" and enticed a 15-year-old male victim to send sexually explicit videos and photographs of himself to Tillman. Tillman then threatened to send those images to the victim's family if the teen did not comply with further demands for more sexual videos and photos. Tillman specifically directed the victim to pose in humiliating positions. According to the publicly filed documents resulting from the FBI probe, Tillman manipulated and abused at least four minors in this manner.

He's set to be arraigned Aug. 28.

Other defendants being called out today included:

-Thirty-nine-year-old Christine Diane Foster of Fontana, who's alleged to have taken pornographic photos of a three-year-old in her care.

-Tabitha Walls and Kenyati Potts of Apple Valley, who allegedly met a 17-year-old in Las Vegas, beat her and made her work the streets of L.A. and the Inland Empire.

And then there are these people, according to ICE's statement:

Michael Lee Lewis, 65, of Ontario, who was indicted for advertising, distributing, receiving and possessing child pornography. He is scheduled to be arraigned Aug. 23 in Los Angeles;

Ryan Christopher Edgecomb, 32, of Murrieta, who was indicted for distributing, receiving and possessing child pornography; his trial is scheduled for Sept. 10 in Riverside;

Jarrett Wayne Martindale, Jr., 26, of Palm Desert, who was indicted for distributing, receiving, and possessing child pornography. He pleaded guilty to possession of child pornography and is scheduled to be sentenced Oct. 21;

Theodore William Reed, 58, of Victorville, who was indicted for failure to register as a sex offender and for whom an arrest warrant has been issued;

Michael Weitzel, 56, of Palm Desert, who was charged in a felony information with possessing child pornography; a plea agreement has been filed in which Weitzel agrees to plead guilty to the charge; a warrant for Weitzel's arrest has been issued;

Skyler J. Olberding, 26, of Washington, Iowa, was indicted for possessing child pornography; a warrant for Olberding's arrest has been issued;

John Michael Dragan, 64, of Moreno Valley, who was indicted for receiving and possessing child pornography. His arraignment is set for Aug. 27 in Los Angeles; and

Theron Charles Barron, 21, of Rialto, who was indicted for distributing, receiving, and possessing child pornography; a plea agreement has been filed in which Barron agrees to plead guilty to possession of child pornography; he is scheduled to plead guilty Aug. 19 in Riverside.

Most of the charges involve mandatory minimum sentences of 10 years of the suspects are convicted; some come with 20 year sentences upon conviction.

Send feedback and tips to the author. Follow Dennis Romero on Twitter at @dennisjromero. Follow LA Weekly News on Twitter at @laweeklynews.

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