Christina Cortez is a 38-year-old Texas daycare worker who, at least according to the charges she appeared in court to face this week, shares a fantasy of performing perverse sex acts on small children with a wanted fugitive sexual predator.
In fact, the sick online relationship between Cortez, who had no previous criminal record, and 29-year-old Matthew Harbin, who definitely did, became so intense that she used her job in a Corpus Christi daycare facility to produce pornographic images of a child — which she then sent by email to Harbin, according to the criminal complaint filed against her and Harbin by the United States Department of Justice.
Using the email address “email@example.com,” the DOJ charges, Cortez sent one photo of a preschool-age girl to Harbin — who was on the run for sex offenses involving minors in Alabama and living under an alias in Brownsville, Texas — along the the message, “There’s one that is SO pretty. I would love to watch us with her.”
She then gave the age of the child as two-and-a-half.
Harbin was using the email address “firstname.lastname@example.org.” From that address he forwarded pictures allegedly taken by Cortez of a child at the daycare facility to a correspondent in the United Kingdom. But that correspondent was, in fact, an undercover police officer posing online as a pedophile.
First, Harbin sent pictures of a preschool-age girl fully clothed to the officer. Those emails were followed up by five more images of the same toddler, unclothed, in sexually explicit positions, and being abused sexually. Those explicit child pornography images were created by Cortez, according to the federal charges against her.
The images allegedly showed the little girl being positioned in highly sexualized poses, as well as images of the girl being fondled and touching herself in a sexual way, presumably under instructions from an adult.
Cortez has reportedly admitted taking pictures of children while they were clothed, but denied producing the explicit kiddie porn images.
According to the criminal complaint against her, however, Cortez emailed the explicit images to Harbin in July of last year — though it remains unclear when the photos were actually taken. When authorities searched her home, Homeland Security agents seized a Samsung smartphone which they said she used to take the pictures.
Also in Texas last year, wealthy Dallas housewife Erika Susan Perdue was convicted of trading child pornography online.
Harbin was already wanted by federal law enforcement for allegedly receiving child pornography when he lived in Alabama, and sending sexually explicit images to a minor.
According to media reports, Christina Cortez claims on her Facebook page to be a mother to children of her own.
[Images: Facebook, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement]