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HOUSTON — A Houston man was sentenced Aug. 24 to serve 15 years in federal prison for receiving child sexual abuse material following an investigation by Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) Houston with assistance from FBI Houston.

Ja-Anthony Ledell Kennedy, 26, pleaded guilty to receiving child sexual abuse material on April 24. In addition to his prison sentence, Kennedy was ordered to pay $3,000 in restitution to his victims and will be required to register as a sex offender. Upon completion of his prison term, he will be required to serve 10 years on supervised release. During that time, he must comply with numerous requirements designed to restrict his access to children and the internet.

At the hearing, the court heard about the harm to victims of this type of crime. In handing down the prison term, the court noted efforts to promote respect for the law, deter similar future crimes and fashion a just sentence considering all factors.

The investigation began in 2020, when authorities learned of files being stored online that contained images of child sexual abuse. Those files were linked to Kennedy.

The investigation further revealed that Kennedy had been sending and receiving images and videos of child sexual abuse on the Kik messaging application from 2020 to 2021. When confronted with this evidence, Kennedy admitted to trading child pornography in Kik chats to continue to receive access to this material.

Kennedy had 76 videos and 60 images of child sexual abuse material in his online accounts. Some included victims as young as two years old.

Previously released on bond, Kennedy is expected to surrender this afternoon pending transfer to a U.S. Bureau of Prisons facility to be determined in the near future.

Assistant U.S. Attorneys Christine J. Lu and Sherin S. Daniel prosecuted the case.

For more news and information on HSI’s efforts to aggressively investigate child exploitation and child pornography in Southeast Texas follow us on X, formerly known as Twitter, @HSIHouston.

HSI encourages the public to report suspected child predators and any suspicious activity through its toll-free Tip Line at 866-347-2423. The tipline is staffed around the clock by investigators. From outside the United States and Canada, callers should dial 802-872-6199. Hearing impaired users can call TTY 802-872-6196.

HSI is the principal investigative arm of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS), responsible for investigating transnational crime and threats, specifically those criminal organizations that exploit the global infrastructure through which international trade, travel, and finance move. HSI’s workforce of more than 8,700 employees consists of more than 6,000 special agents assigned to 237 cities throughout the United States, and 93 overseas locations in 56 countries. HSI’s international presence represents DHS’ largest investigative law enforcement presence abroad and one of the largest international footprints in U.S. law enforcement.

ICE breaking news Houston man sentenced to 15 years for receiving child sexual abuse material following HSI Houston investigation Government Agency News