CONTACT: Barbara Burns
PHONE: (716) 843-5817
FAX #: (716) 551-3051
ROCHESTER, N.Y. - U.S. Attorney James P. Kennedy, Jr. announced today that Daniel Hays, 42, of Bliss, NY, pleaded guilty before U.S. District Judge Frank P. Geraci, Jr. to attempted receipt of child pornography. The charge carries a minimum penalty of five years in prison, a maximum penalty of 20 years, and a $250,000 fine.
Assistant U.S. Attorney Kyle Rossi, who is handling the case, stated that during April and May of 2021, the defendant engaged in sexually explicit online and text communications with an individual who he believed to be an 11-year-old girl. In reality, the child was an undercover New York State Police Investigator working with the Department of Homeland Security. During the conversations, Hays discussed having sex with the child, and asked the child to produce and send to him naked photographs. On May 11, 2021, the defendant traveled approximately two hours from Bliss to the child’s home in the Western District of New York, in order to have sex with the child. Hays was arrested upon his arrival at the meeting place, at which point he was found to be in possession of candy that he purchased as a gift for the child.
The plea is the result of an investigation by the New York State Police, under the direction of Major Barry Chase, and Homeland Security Investigations, under the direction of Special Agent-in-Charge Kevin Kelly.
Sentencing is scheduled for October 19, 2021, before Judge Geraci.
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Department of Justice
Office of the U.S. Attorney
Western District of New York