Fogle associate gets 27 years in child porn case

This undated booking photo provided by the Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department shows former Jared Foundation executive director Russell Taylor. Federal prosecutors in May 2015 filed a criminal complaint charging Taylor, 43, with seven counts of production of child pornography and one count of possession of child pornography. (Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department via AP)

INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) — A judge sentenced the former head of Jared Fogle’s charity to 27 years in prison Thursday afternoon.

Russell Taylor pleaded guilty to 13 federal crimes during his sentencing hearing — 12 counts of child exploitation and one count of distributing child pornography.

In addition to serving 27 years, a judge ordered lifetime supervised release.

Before the sentencing, Taylor agreed to plead guilty to the terms of the plea agreement. Under those terms, Taylor faced 15 to 35 years behind bars. The prosecution asked for 35 years. Taylor’s attorneys asked for 15 to nearly 23.

The same judge gave Fogle more time than the prosecution had asked for. Court documents showed the maximum sentence for Taylor’s crimes could have been 380 years.

Investigators raided Taylor’s home back in April, after receiving a tip. Prosecutors accused Taylor of secretly producing child pornography by setting up hidden cameras in his home, where he could catch minors undressing. In court documents, prosecutors say the victims ranged from 9 to 16 years old. Prosecutors said one of the victims knew they were being recorded.

Prosecutors then accused Taylor of providing Fogle with child pornography. Taylor’s attorneys asked for a lesser sentence because of Fogle’s involvement in the case.  In court documents, the defense says the “public ridicule” that Taylor has gone through, because of Fogle’s celebrity status, along with 15 years in prison, is enough to keep him from committing crimes again.

Taylor’s defense team also argued he his mentally ill and suffered a traumatic childhood. In court documents, they said he had an abusive relationship with Fogle. Taylor’s attorneys said Fogle could manipulate Taylor because he had control of his home and job. Court documents say Fogle “had the perfect person to carry out his sexually deviant pursuits.”

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