Sterling Resident Receives 32-Year Prison Term for Child Exploitation via Livestream

Alexandria, Va. – A Sterling man, Michael Anthony Baxter, has been sentenced to 32 years in prison for conspiring with a child sex trafficker in the Philippines to livestream the sexual abuse of numerous children on the internet.

According to court documents, between April 2017 and November 2020, Baxter, 50, and the child sex trafficker used children, some as young as three years old, to produce more than 30 livestreaming webcam shows depicting sexual abuse. They used an internet application to coordinate the sessions, preview the children involved, discuss the sexual acts to be performed, and direct the abuse in real time via text chat. Baxter paid the trafficker through a third-party website to facilitate these heinous acts.

The co-conspirator was arrested in the Philippines in February 2021 for human trafficking offenses. Despite this arrest, Baxter continued to engage with other suspected child sex traffickers.

In December 2023, law enforcement executed a federal search warrant at Baxter’s residence, finding him actively involved in a chat with another suspected trafficker on the same application. Records obtained from the application indicated that Baxter had purchased livestreams involving the other user’s 7- and 10-year-old daughters in sexually explicit conduct.

Besides the livestream victims, Baxter possessed hundreds of files depicting child sexual abuse on his computers. He is a registered sex offender, previously convicted in 2009 in Prince William County Circuit Court for possession of child pornography.

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