Then 38-year-old defendant recorded his sexual abuse of 16-year-old female high school student; admits to other sex crimes
OAKLAND – Ranbir Singh was sentenced Wednesday to 230 months in prison in Oakland federal court today for the production of child pornography, announced United States Attorney Stephanie M. Hinds and Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) Special Agent in Charge Tatum King. The sentence was handed down by United States District Judge Haywood S. Gilliam, Jr.
“No statute of limitations exists for federal child pornography crimes, including the production of child pornography,” said United States Attorney Stephanie M. Hinds. “This tragic child sexual abuse occurred nine years ago, yet we still obtained justice for these victims. Their strength and perseverance in coming forward enabled our successful result. For those who suffered at any time from a similar crime, please find the strength to come forward as these victims did.”
“HSI special agents worked closely with Richmond Police Department and the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Northern District of California to hold Singh accountable for the production of child sexual abuse material which involved the exploitation of a 16-year-old victim,” said Tatum King, Special Agent in Charge, Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) San Francisco. “Singh’s sentence will hopefully bring closure to the impacted victims and their families so they can begin the process of healing after surviving this horrible crime.”
Singh, 47, of San Pablo, California, pleaded guilty on September 15, 2021, to one count of production of child pornography. In his plea agreement, Singh admitted that on March 13, 2013, he engaged in sexual acts in an Alameda County hotel room with a female high school student. At the time, the minor female was 16 years old. He was 38 years old. The plea agreement describes that Singh set up a video camera in the hotel room before the crime occurred. Singh then persuaded the minor female to engage in sex acts. Singh positioned the camera, he admitted, to record the acts. The minor female repeatedly protested during sex and told Singh to stop, but he continued. (See related article)
Singh further admitted that earlier, in January 2013, he video-recorded the same minor female sitting in a car’s backseat in a compromising and exposed sexual position.
In a memo filed for sentencing, the government describes that Singh first contacted the minor female on Facebook after he observed her at a local temple when she was 14 years old. He made in-person contact with her when she was 15 years old. At that time Singh told her he was in his 20s, despite being 38 and married with three children. In the months that followed, Singh picked up the minor female from her high school after classes or during breaks. He made ongoing attempts to pressure her into sexual acts. The sexual contact eventually occurred when the minor female was 16, a high school junior.
Singh also admitted in his plea agreement that he traveled later, in May 2013, to a casino hotel in Placer County with a different minor female. Singh admitted he knew this female was also a minor. The government’s sentencing memo describes that Singh enticed the minor female onto the trip using a ruse about tickets to a concert. Singh admitted in his plea agreement that he rented a casino hotel room for them and then showed this minor female a video recording depicting Singh’s sexual acts with the other minor female described above. Singh admitted he engaged in sex with this minor female in the Placer County casino hotel room.
Singh’s conduct traumatized both minor female victims, as the government’s sentencing memo describes. The first victim suffered severe adverse consequences that have become well documented. The second victim could not, years later, describe what happened in the Placer County hotel without weeping uncontrollably.
The initial federal charges were brought against Singh in a complaint filed March 1, 2021. The complaint reflects that a local law enforcement investigation began when the two minor female victims came forward, but they did not know Singh’s true name. After determining his identity, and years after Singh had sexually abused these minor victims, the video recordings were discovered on Singh’s laptop, having been stored there for years.
The federal investigation began when the video recordings were discovered on Singh’s laptop. There is no federal statute of limitations for charges relating to child pornography crimes, including production of child pornography, under 18 U.S.C. § 3299.
In addition to the 230 month prison term, United States District Judge Haywood S. Gilliam Jr. sentenced Singh, who was in custody at the sentencing hearing, to a 15 year term of supervised release to follow his release from prison. He began serving his prison sentence immediately.
Jonathan U. Lee is the Assistant U.S. Attorney who prosecuted the case, with the assistance of Leeya Kekona, Kay Konopaske, and Kathleen Turner. The prosecution is the result of an investigation by Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) and the Richmond Police Department.
This federal case was brought in U.S. District Court as part of Project Safe Childhood, a nationwide initiative to combat the growing epidemic of child sexual exploitation and abuse, launched in May 2006 by the Department of Justice. Led by U.S. Attorneys’ Offices and CEOS, Project Safe Childhood marshals federal, state, and local resources to better locate, apprehend and prosecute individuals who exploit children via the internet, as well as to identify and rescue victims. For more information about Project Safe Childhood, please visit www.justice.gov/psc.