INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. (Sept. 1, 2015) – The ex-right-hand man to former Subway spokesman Jared Fogle has offered to plead guilty to child pornography and sexual exploitation charges similar to those that will also send his friend to federal prison for several years.
The FBI raid of Russell Taylor's Avon house last April, and his interrogation by authorities, led to child pornography and underage sex charges against Fogle and 13 counts of child pornography and sexual exploitation counts against Taylor.
Taylor has now agreed to plead guilty and ask for no less than 15 years in federal prison.
The U.S. Attorney promises he won't seek more than 35 years behind bars.
The investigation of Taylor began when a friend called an Indiana State Trooper in October of 2014 and said the Hendricks County man and his wife expressed an interest in bestiality and visiting Thailand to have sex with children.
The raid by federal agents, state troopers and IMPD detectives six months later provided a depraved treasure trove of equipment and the exploitation of children.
"A rough estimate of the work they did includes search warrants for 16 smart phones, five basic cell phones, five MP3 players, five tablets, six laptops, one desk top, six loose hard drives, five cameras including hidden cameras, flash drives, ten of those, ten memory cards, 46 CDs and 22 DVDs," U.S Attorney Josh Winkler said at the time of Fogle's Plea Agreement August 19th. "The approximate amount of data reviewed by the Indiana State Police, the Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department and the FBI includes 159,634 text messages, 27, 140 emails, 47,623 images and 3394 videos."
The vast majority of the equipment and images belonged to or originated with Taylor.
"Taylor's producing this material and providing it to Mr. Fogle," said Senior Litigation Counsel for the U.S. Attorney Steve Debrota.
"The defendant used multiple hidden cameras in his residences to produce received visual depictions of numerous minors engaging in sexually explicit conduct," reads Taylor's plea agreement.
The illicit taping began in 2011 and continued for four years. Taylor knew the victims by name through family and personal associations.
As part of his plea offer, Taylor agrees to cooperate with investigators in continuing their probe.
Taylor tried to kill himself inside the Marion County Jail in early May after authorities seized custody of the three children he shared with his wife.
He spent several days in a coma.
Bradley Banks, Taylor's attorney who negotiated the plea agreement with the U.S. Attorney, told Fox 59 News that his client is sufficiently recovered from his attempted suicide to cooperate with authorities and plead guilty.
Taylor signed his plea agreement August 28th.
He will remain housed in a federal detention facility in Henderson, Kentucky, while Fogle is free pending his sentencing November 19th.
The government will seek no more than a twelve-and-a-half year sentence for Fogle.
When Taylor's house was raided April 29th, Fogle issued a statement that read, "I was shocked to learn of the disturbing allegations against. Mr. Taylor. Effective immediately, the Jared Foundation is severing all ties with Mr. Taylor."