Mattoon man sentenced to 45 years in prison for sexual exploitation of children

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URBANA, Ill. (WCIA) — The United States Attorney’s Office for the Central District of Illinois announced Monday that Jeffrey West was sentenced to 45 years in prison for child sexual exploitation offenses.

According to officials, a federal jury in April convicted the 53-year-old Mattoon man of two counts of sexual exploitation of minors, two counts of commission of the offense by a registered sex offender, two counts of receiving child pornography and one count of possession of child pornography.

Officials said in 2019, a teenage boy reported West for sexually abusing him. During an investigation following this report, police found 1,000 images and videos of child pornography in different devices in West’s home and office in Mattoon. West also used the video-chatting website Omegle to entice and coerce young boys to engage in sexually explicit conduct.

Police said West has a prior conviction in Coles County for aggravated criminal sexual abuse of a 10-year-old girl and a 4-year-old boy. He was arrested in May 2019 but was later released on bond. In September 2019, he was arrested again on his federal charges. West has remained in the custody of the U.S. Marshals Service since his federal arrest. After West serves his time in prison, he will be on supervised release for 15 years and will be registered as a sex offender.

“Those who choose to sexually abuse children will be caught, prosecuted and severely punished,” said Acting U.S. Attorney Douglas J. Quivey. “I commend the diligent investigators of the Mattoon Police Department, working in conjunction with the FBI, for making our community safer.”

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