Ferndale man arrested for receiving child pornography following federal investigation

A 22-year-old Ferndale man who used multiple Snapchat accounts in an attempt to set up meetings to sexually abuse a young girl in 2023 was arrested last week after a federal investigation revealed he requested and received child pornography from a 13-year-old girl in August 2021.

Eduardo Orduna-Botello was charged March 21 in the Western District of Washington in U.S. District Court with one count of receipt of child pornography. A federal arrest warrant was issued the same day.

Orduna-Botello was arrested April 10 and booked into the Whatcom County Jail shortly after 1:45 p.m. He was transferred to federal custody the following day around 8 a.m., federal court and jail records show.

Orduna-Botello was released on his personal recognizance following his first appearance in federal court on April 11. A federal appearance bond was issued the same day. The bond includes special pre-trial release conditions Orduna-Botello must comply with, including limited travel within the Western District of Washington, surrender of all passports, prohibitions on weapons, accessing digital devices and the internet, maintaining employment, no contact with the victim or witnesses, and no contact with anyone under age 18. Orduna-Botello will also be required to have his location monitored by GPS, participate in a pre-trial support group or undergo a mental health evaluation, and comply with any recommended treatment.

If Orduna-Botello fails to follow the conditions, a warrant will be put out for his arrest, according to court records.

His next appearance is scheduled for April 25 in federal court.

Investigation started

In April 2023, a Snapchat user with numerous followers received a chat message from an account, later identified as belonging to Orduna-Botello.

During the conversation, Orduna-Botello, who was using a fake name on his account, asked the user if they had kids, and later requested a photograph of the user’s daughter. The user then blocked Orduna-Botello’s account, according to court records.

Minutes later, Orduna-Botello began using a second Snapchat account, also under a fake name, to message the user. Orduna-Botello included a link to the first account’s profile and asked why the user had blocked him.

Using his second account, Orduna-Botello then told the user that he would give them $10,000 for two hours with the user’s 12-year-old daughter, and would buy something from the user, according to federal court documents.

The user then blocked Orduna-Botello’s second account and called the Whatcom County Sheriff’s Office to report the incident. A sheriff’s detective asked if the user would be willing to unblock Orduna-Botello’s first account, and encouraged the user to keep the conversation going. The user cooperated, and the user and Orduna-Botello began chatting again on Orduna-Botello’s first Snapchat account, the court records state.

The sheriff’s office then worked with the U.S. Department of Homeland Security’s Investigations team. An undercover HSI agent assumed the user’s identity, with the user’s permission, and began chatting with Orduna-Botello.

The undercover agent and Orduna-Botello exchanged messages, from roughly April 19, 2023 to June 21, 2023, in which they negotiated the details of Orduna-Botello sexually abusing the user’s children, including setting a price, time and place to meet. The undercover agent arranged multiple meetings at various locations across Whatcom County with Orduna-Botello, but he didn’t show up to the meetings.

During the undercover agent’s conversations with Orduna-Botello, the user informed the undercover agent that a third Snapchat account, suspected to be Orduna-Botello’s, contacted them. Using the third account, which was not using a fake name, Orduna-Botello told the user he was 21, that he lived in Ferndale, asked the user what they were selling, and sent two pictures of himself. The user then blocked the third account, court documents state.

Later the same day, a fourth Snapchat account, which didn’t use a fake name and was suspected to be operated by Orduna-Botello, added the user on Snapchat by search.

A Homeland Security summons sent to Snapchat later confirmed that all four Snapchat accounts were being operated by the same IP address. The third Snapchat account also included a verified email address with Orduna-Botello’s name, and his phone number, according to court records.

A Homeland Security summons sent to Comcast revealed the IP address associated with the Snapchat accounts matched Orduna-Botello’s home address in Ferndale. The information provided by Comcast also showed that all four Snapchat accounts had been accessed several times from that residence.

HSI was also able to confirm Orduna-Botello was likely the person operating all four Snapchat accounts based on other various information he had shared during his conversation with both the user and the undercover agent, including his age, and references to his birthday and employment, court records state.

On June 22, 2023, HSI agents executed search warrants for Orduna-Botello, his home and his vehicle. Orduna-Botello’s cell phone was found in his car and seized.

In an interview with HSI agents in front of his home, Orduna-Botello discussed the four Snapchat accounts he had been using.

When asked if he was using any additional accounts, he allegedly told the agents he wasn’t using any others and that the four accounts likely wouldn’t be found on his phone, as he had “stopped that,” according to court records.

Snapchat accounts searched

HSI agents obtained federal search warrants for the four Snapchat accounts on May 19, 2023.

A search of the accounts revealed Orduna-Botello was chatting with numerous Snapchat users who identified themselves as minors, including a 13-year-old girl, court documents state.

Using his third Snapchat account, Orduna-Botello chatted with a 13-year-old Whatcom County girl for roughly two weeks in late August 2021, and requested the girl send him self-produced child pornography, according to federal court records.

During the time Orduna-Botello was messaging the girl, he asked her where she was from, attempted to convince her to meet up with him to engage in sexual intercourse and told her he would pay her for her services, the court documents state. When the girl told Orduna-Botello that she was young, he responded that he would wear a condom and get her Plan B, the records state.

Orduna-Botello told the girl he was 20 years old, and she responded by telling him she was under 14 years old. He then told her “Keep it low key don’t tell no one,” court documents state.

Orduna-Botello later convinced the girl to send him non-pornographic pictures of herself, before requesting pornographic pictures, which the girl sent. He responded by sending her his phone number. (That number later matched the number of the cellphone taken from Orduna-Botello’s vehicle in 2023).

Orduna-Botello also requested pornographic videos from the girl, which she sent, according to court records.

The HSI investigation revealed the girl’s mother filed a report with the nonprofit National Center for Missing and Exploited Children detailing Orduna-Botello’s conversations with her daughter.

During an interview with a federal crime analyst in March of this year, the girl confirmed the person in the pictures and videos she sent to Orduna-Botello was her, and that she was 13 years old at the time, court documents state.


Brigid Collins Family Support Center: 360-734-4616, brigidcollins.org

Brigid Collins Family Support Center professionals are on-call between 10 a.m. and 2 p.m., Monday through Friday, to answer questions about children, families, abuse prevention or treatment at (360) 734-4616.

Child Protective Services: Washington state hotline for reporting child abuse and neglect, 866-829-2153.

Domestic Violence & Sexual Assault Services: 24-hour Help Line: 360-715-1563, Email: info@dvsas.org.

Lummi Victims of Crime: 360-312-2015.

Tl’ils Ta’á’altha Victims of Crime: 360-325-3310 or nooksacktribe.org/departments/youth-family-services/tlils-taaaltha-victims-of-crime-program/

Bellingham Police: You can call anonymously at 360-778-8611, or go online at cob.org/tips.

WWU Consultation and Sexual Assault Support Survivor Advocacy Services: 360-650-3700 or wp.wwu.edu/sexualviolence/.

If you or a child is in immediate danger, call 911 and make a report to law enforcement.

To report child abuse or neglect call 1-866-END HARM.