INDIANAPOLIS – The former director of a foundation created by longtime Subway spokesman Jared Fogle has agreed to plead guilty to 12 counts of child exploitation and one count of child pornography, federal prosecutors said Tuesday.
Under the plea agreement, Russell Taylor, 44, cannot ask for a sentence of less than 15 years in prison and prosecutors can ask for a sentence of up to 35 years, followed by supervised release for the remainder of his life, prosecutors said. The judge presiding over his case is not bound by the terms.
“Adults who sexually exploit children by producing child pornography knowingly cause vast harm to their victims and should expect appropriately strong punishment,” U.S. Attorney Josh Minkler said in a news release.
Taylor until earlier this year led the Jared Foundation, which raises awareness and money to fight childhood obesity. He is in federal custody. Fogle, who faces federal charges of distribution and receipt of child pornography and travelling to engage in illicit sexual conduct with a minor, is expected to plead guilty at a Nov. 19 hearing. He has been released on home detention.
In the plea agreement, Taylor admitted using multiple hidden cameras in his Indianapolis-area residences to produce child pornography involving 12 minors between March 2011 and April 2015, prosecutors said. None of the minors were aware they were being filmed while nude, changing clothes, or engaged in other activities, prosecutors said.
Federal, state and local authorities served a search warrant at Taylor’s home on April 29 and found a cache of sexually explicit photos and videos Taylor produced by secretly filming the minors at this home. Investigators found more than 400 videos of child pornography in computers, cellular phones, and storage media recovered from a home office, prosecutors said.
Taylor also downloaded from the Internet commercially produced pornography involving children as young as about 6, prosecutors said. Fogle gained access to a large amount of the material, they said.
A message seeking comment was left Tuesday for an attorney representing Taylor.