A complaint filed today charges Manalapan resident Jennifer Mahoney on two counts of sexual exploitation of a 5-year-old girl. Mahoney allegedly abused the girl on multiple occasions and streamed footage of the sexual assault over the internet, according to New Jersey U.S. Attorney Paul J. Fishman and Assistant Attorney General Lanny A. Breuer of the Justice Department’s Criminal Division.
Mahoney, 32, is currently being held in Monmouth County Correctional Institute in default of $500,000 bail on related charges, . Mahoney will appear in front U.S. Magistrate Judge Tonianne J. Bongiovanni in Trenton federal court on Jan. 30.
“According to the Complaint, Jennifer Mahoney sexually assaulted a child, cavalierly recording and sharing the girl’s humiliation over video chat,” U.S. Attorney Fishman said. “We cannot forget that for every image or video of what we call ‘child pornography,’ a child will carry the lifelong scars of rape and abuse recorded for others’ gratification. Whether making, distributing or viewing child pornography, the depraved appetites of offenders create a market for the destruction of a child’s innocence.”
On Dec. 13, special agents of the FBI and other law enforcement in Manalapan Township. Mahoney was arrested by Manalapan Police on that date. In an interview with the FBI she admitted to performing oral sex on the 5-year-old girl while she was babysitting her on two separate occasions in August and September of 2011, according to the complaint.
A computer had been seized by law enforcement in Texas which contained three videos of Mahoney having sexual contact with a child on Oct. 2, 2011, the complaint filed in Trenton federal court said. Mahoney live-streamed herself having sexual contact with the child to the Texas man over video chat via Skype.
Two of the videos found on the man’s computer consisted of the video chat where Mahoney is molesting the child, laughing, and talking to someone, believed to be the person on the other end of the video chat. Mahoney believed this man lived in Arizona, he is listed as a co-conspirator in the complaint. She e-mailed the video recordings of the sexual acts to this man and one other individual. She filmed the sexual assaults on her iPhone.
These videos are approximately four minutes in length and show Mahoney performing oral sex on the child while she appears to be asleep, lying on her stomach with her buttocks exposed. Mahoney is wearing a lace top which exposes her breasts and is kneeling at the foot of the bed while she is performing the sexual assault. Mahoney masturbates at one point during the assault, according to the FBI.
The third video recovered from the Texas man’s computer is less than a minute in length and it shows Mahoney sexually assaulting the child in a bathtub while Mahoney films the assault on her iPhone, the complaint said. Mahoney tells the little girl to bend over so that she can rinse her.
"Like a mermaid?" the child asks.
"Like a mermaid, sweetheart," Mahoney responds, before penetrating the child with her finger.
“Ms. Mahoney is charged with committing heinous acts of sexual violence against a young child, and then streaming her crimes over the Internet,” Assistant Attorney General Breuer said. “These allegations are shocking in their depravity. When individuals exploit children for any purpose, we must act swiftly and decisively to hold them accountable.”
Every individual charge of sexual exploitation of children carries a mandatory minimum penalty of 15 years in prison, a possible maximum penalty of 30 years in prison, and a $250,000 fine.
“The sexual exploitation of children continues to be a primary law enforcement concern, and this case is among the most egregious in that it involves manufacture and dissemination elements, which is the engine that drives the problem,” Michael B. Ward, Special Agent In Charge of the FBI’s Newark Field Office, said. “Conduct like this can forever shatter the innocence of a 5-year-old child, allegedly for the pleasure of Jennifer Mahoney and an Internet partner. The impact on the victim, family, and others is immeasurable.”
Fishman is grateful to the FBI Cyber Crimes Task Force, under the direction of Special Agent Ward and the Monmouth County Prosecutor’s Office, under the direction of Prosecutor Peter E. Warshaw Jr. for the investigation which eventually lead to these federal charges.
Project Safe Childhood, a nationwide plan which battles the increasing spread of child exploitation ab abuse was launched in May 2006 by the Department of Justice, and this case is part of that effort which is led by U.S. Attorney’s Offices and the Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section in the Justice Department’s Criminal Division. Project Safe Childhood gathers federal, state, and local resources to find, arrest, and prosecute individuals who exploit children and identify and rescue those victims.
Assistant U.S. Attorney in Trenton and CEOS Trial Attorney Keith A. Becker in Washington are representing the government.
The charges and allegations contained in the Complaint are merely accusations, and the defendant is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.