A California man is headed for prison after he coerced 2 Utah boys — ages 8 and 10 — to send him sexually explicit photos

(Photo courtesy FBI) Nikko Adolfo Perez

A California man pleaded guilty to coercing two Utah boys — ages 8 and 10 — into sending him images of themselves “engaged in sexually explicit conduct,” according to the U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of California.

Nikko Adolfo Perez, 26, of Atwater, Calif., pleaded guilty to sexual exploitation of children, coercion and enticement of a minor, and receipt and distribution of child pornography, U.S. Attorney McGregor W. Scott announced.

Perez contacted the two Utah boys on Instagram and offered to pay them with Google Play cards “if they engaged in requested sexual acts or poses,” according to the criminal complaint. When one of the boys said he would call 911, “Perez threatened to disseminate the sexually explicit images of the victims” and “harm family members of the victims.”

Perez also admitted that he used Skype, Kik, Discord, Snapchat and LiveMe to contact between 50 and 100 minors, persuading them “to pose nude or engage in sexually explicit activities, sometimes with other minors.” He also admitted paying the victims and that “he sent some of the material that he had requested to other people.”

When he is sentenced on May 20, Perez faces 15 to 30 years for the sexual exploitation count; 10 years to life for coercion and enticement; and 5 to 20 years for receipt of child pornography; a fine of up to $250,000; and a lifetime of supervised release.

The case was investigated by the Salt Lake Police Department and FBI offices in Salt Lake City and Fresno, Calif., as part of Project Safe Childhood, a nationwide initiative launched in May 2006 by the Department of Justice to combat child sexual exploitation and abuse.