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  1. Homeland Security Investigations (HSI)
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  3. Investigation Results in 50-Year Prison Sentence for Sex Offender Who Exploited Minors Using Facebook

HSI RGV Child Exploitation Task Force Investigation Results in 50-Year Prison Sentence for Sex Offender Who Exploited Minors Using Facebook

Release Date: May 16, 2024

McALLEN, Texas — A Virginia resident was sentenced for sexual exploitation of children in the McAllen area following an investigation conducted by Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) Rio Grande Valley Child Exploitation Task Force.

Michael Tienping Tang, 35, was sentenced by a federal judge May 14 to 50 years in federal prison. At the hearing, the court heard additional evidence, including how victims of these schemes frequently feel deep fear and shame and often delay in reporting the conduct. In this case, however, the judge heard how two minor victims ultimately came forward and exposed Tang’s crimes. The court handed down the prison term, noting Tang’s prior sex convictions and the fact that he committed this current scheme while under supervision for those prior cases. In addition, the court noted Tang’s use of social media to stalk his victims, their friends and family, as well as his use of multiple accounts to coerce over 50 victims into engaging in sexually explicit acts at his request. Tang will serve the rest of his life on supervised release following completion of his prison term. During that time, he will be required to comply with numerous requirements designed to restrict his access to children and the internet. Tang will also be ordered to register as a sex offender. Tang pleaded guilty May 22, 2019.

“The abuse and exploitation of children is deeply cruel and violates the trust and safety of the victims. It generates trauma that may not heal. We hope today’s sentence provides some measure of justice to those he harmed,” said HSI San Antonio Special Agent in Charge Craig S. Larrabee. “Fortunately, he will spend the next 50 years in prison where he cannot harm another child. We will seek the same lengthy sentence for anyone who seeks to take advantage of children in our communities.”

“Tang, a child predator, weaponized Facebook to serve his sick and depraved desires,” said U.S. Attorney Alamdar S. Hamdani. “He used the common social media app to target, exploit and extort our most precious and vulnerable asset, our children. Today’s sentence shrinks Tang’s social circle shaped by the vastness of an online world to the restrictive confines of a federal penitentiary.”

According to court documents, the investigation revealed Tang utilized Facebook to coerce and entice minor children to produce child sexual abuse material. Tang’s requests frequently included bestiality and would demand minor victims with younger siblings to produce images and videos engaging in sexually explicit conduct with their younger siblings.

The investigation began in May 2017 when authorities learned about the possible online sexual exploitation of two minor victim students within a local school district. Law enforcement discovered Tang coerced them into producing and sending images and videos depicting themselves engaging in sexually explicit conduct to his Facebook profile. When the victims blocked Tang on Facebook, he created new accounts, communicated and interacted with the victim’s Facebook friends and contacts and regained access to them. After regaining access, Tang coerced both victims to engage in a list of sexual activities by threatening to disseminate their images and videos.

A federal search warrant of Tang’s Facebook account revealed over 50 potential minor victims who had sent and/or received child sexual abuse material.

Authorities identified a third minor victim Tang coerced to produce and send images and videos depicting themselves engaging in sexually explicit conduct. Tang further coerced this minor victim to produce a video using a younger fourth victim’s hand for sexually explicit conduct. When the minor victim did not meet Tang’s deadline to produce an additional video engaging in oral sex with the younger minor victim, Tang distributed the minor victim’s video.

Tang was previously convicted in 2012 of two separate child exploitation offenses, including attempted indecent liberties with a child and two counts of possession of child pornography in Virginia.

Tang will remain in custody pending transfer to a U.S. Bureau of Prisons facility to be determined in the near future.

HSI Rio Grande Valley Child Exploitation Investigations Task Force conducted the investigation.

Assistant U.S. Attorneys for the Southern District of Texas James Sturgis and Alexa D. Parcell prosecuted the case.

HSI encourages the public to report suspected child predators and any suspicious activity through its toll-free tip line at 877-4-HSI-TIP. Callers may remain anonymous.

HSI takes a victim-centered approach to child exploitation investigations by working to identify, rescue and stabilize victims. HSI works in partnership with the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children, ICAC partners, and other federal, state and local agencies to help solve cases and rescue sexually exploited children. You can report suspected child sexual exploitation or missing children to the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children’s toll-free, 24-hour hotline at 800-THE-LOST.

HSI is a founding member of the Virtual Global Taskforce, an international alliance of law enforcement agencies and private industry sector partners working together to prevent and deter online child sexual abuse.

One of HSI’s top priorities is to protect the public from crimes of victimization, and HSI’s child exploitation investigations program is a central component of this mission set. Further, HSI is recognized as a global leader in this investigative discipline. The directorate is committed to utilizing its vast authorities, international footprint and strong government and nongovernment partnerships to identify and rescue child victims; identify and apprehend offenders; prevent transnational child sexual abuse; and help make the internet a safer place for children.

Last Updated: 05/20/2024
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