WINCHESTER, Va. – On Monday afternoon, 31-year-old José Hernandez-Hernandez was sentenced to 20 years in prison for carnal knowledge and indecent liberties after admitting to paying a mother to have sex with her 13-year-old daughter.

However, a judge suspended all of that time, except for the 9 months that Hernandez-Hernandez has already served in jail, waiting for his court dates.

“This is a typical type of sentence for a crime of this nature,” said Heather Hovermale, an assistant Commonwealth’s attorney in Winchester who oversaw the prosecution of the case. “[Hernandez] didn’t receive any special consideration as a result of our plea agreement.”

Hernandez-Hernandez is still in the custody of the Northwestern Regional Adult Detention Center as he waits to hear from the U.S. Immigrations and Customs Enforcement Department about the status of his deportation. 

As part of his plea agreement, if Hernandez-Hernandez is deported, he will not be allowed to enter the U.S. for the next 20 years. If he is not deported, Hernandez-Hernandez will serve two years of supervised probation and register as a sex offender.

“We didn’t seek any additional charges because he did cooperate with the Commonwealth, which allowed us to prosecute the victim’s mother in this case,” said Hovermale.

The victim’s mother, Holly Geib, took a plea agreement last week, after it was revealed that she accepted $600 a month from Hernandez-Hernandez so that her 13-year-old daughter could live with him.

According to prosecutors, an investigation revealed that Hernandez-Hernandez had sex with the middle schooler on two separate occasions.

“When the Commonwealth was considering it’s options in this case, the first goal was to protect the victim,” said Hovermale. “In our mind, the victim was at most risk because of her mother who was involved.”

Geib was sentenced to five years in prison, with only one year to serve.

Hovermale pointed out that suspended time does not mean a convicted criminal is “off the hook.” If Geib or Hernandez-Hernandez violate any terms of their plea agreements or probation, they could be sentenced by a judge to serve the rest of their suspended time.

“We believe that that was in the best interest of the victim in this case, and the best interest of our society,” Hovermale concluded.