Surprise man sentenced to 25 years for luring a minor, child sex trafficking

(FLORENCE, AZ August 1st, 2023) - A Surprise man has been sentenced to 25 years in prison for child sex trafficking and luring an underage girl via a social media app to engage in sexual activity as the victim “needed the money to help her mom pay their rent.”

On July 31, 2023, Pinal County Superior Court Judge Daniel Washburn sentenced Joel Disanto, 47, to 25 years in the Arizona Department of Corrections, followed by lifetime probation.

DiSanto pled guilty to Aggravated Luring of a Minor, a Class Two Felony; and Child Sex Trafficking, a Class Two Felony and Dangerous Crime Against Children.

In October, 2022, the mother of a 15-year-old went through her phone and discovered sexually explicit images of her daughter that were being sent through Snap Chat. The victim’s older sister also searched the victim’s cell phone and found a text message indicating the victim had sex with a male in his 40s. During a forensic interview with the victim, she disclosed that she had met a number of men on Snap Chat who sent her sexually explicit material, and that she had been communicating with a subject by the username ‘Daniel Donkey.’ The victim indicated the person behind the username wanted to meet with her in order to engage in sexual activity, and offered to pay her. According to law enforcement, the victim noted that “she needed the money to help her mom pay their rent.”

The victim disclosed that in September 2022 she met with “Daniel Donkey” in Casa Grande and engaged in a sex act with him after making it clear she was 15 years old.

During the investigation, the Casa Grande Police Department obtained a search warrant for the Snapchat account, which helped to identify the account’s creator as DiSanto. DiSanto’s physical characteristics also matched the description provided by the victim. DiSanto was already listed as a sex offender and a sexually violent predator.

Investigators located sexually explicit material on DiSanto’s Snapchat account. The geolocation of his phone also provided details helping to corroborate the victim’s account.