Former youth minister who pleaded guilty to sexual exploitation of children gets 15 years

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FORT WAYNE, Indiana — A former youth ministry leader in northeastern Indiana who pleaded guilty to charges he encouraged adolescent boys to send him sexually explicit photos has been sentenced to 15 years in prison.

The Journal Gazette and WANE-TV report U.S. District Judge Theresa Springmann on Wednesday accepted 36-year-old Nathan Hasty's guilty plea to one count of sexual exploitation of children and sentenced him. Two additional charges were dismissed as part of a plea agreement.

Sprigmann told Hasty the government takes the charge of sexual exploitation of children seriously because it targets "the most vulnerable in our society."

Court documents alleged Hasty used three fake Facebook accounts to contact boys, starting with some online flirting to gain their trust. Authorities say he worked with Fort Wayne Area Youth for Christ.

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