St. Paul man sentenced to 43 years in large sextortion case

September 14, 2022 GMT

ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) — A St. Paul man was sentenced Wednesday to 43 years in prison for running an online pornography scheme that victimized more than 1,000 girls across the United States.

Yue Vang, 31, created fake female profiles online to entice girls to create sexually explicit video images and send them to him, according to prosecutors. Vang knew they were all under 16 because their ages were posted in profiles or they told him.

“Vang is a predator who targeted innocent and impressionable young girls, exploiting their innocence for pictures and videos. He robbed them of their childhood and forever altered their lives and the lives of their families,” said Minneapolis FBI agent Michael Paul.

In one case, authorities said Vang contacted a 15-year-old girl and threatened to distribute sexually explicit pictures of her to her classmates and parents to “ruin her life” unless she complied with demands to send additional nude pictures and videos.

Authorities said about 1,100 girls have been identified as victims,, although law enforcement is working to confirm the identities of many others, said U.S. Attorney Andrew Luger, who labeled it a “vicious sextortion scheme.”

Vang pleaded guilty in June to to two counts of child pornography, one count of possession of child pornography and one count of interstate communications with intent to extort.