An Australian man who was arrested when he arrived at a Los Angeles-area hotel, allegedly to “buy” a 6-year-old boy for sex, faces a detention hearing on Friday.
Michael Quinn, 33, of Melbourne, is charged in a criminal complaint filed in Los Angeles federal court Monday with traveling to the United States for the purpose of engaging in illicit sexual conduct with a minor. The complaint also charges Quinn with attempted sex trafficking of a minor, according to the U.S. Attorney’s Office.
Quinn was arrested Saturday by immigration enforcement agents and, after making his initial court appearance, was ordered jailed pending a detention hearing.
“Predators who travel overseas to sexually exploit children do not just victimize children in faraway lands,” said U.S. Attorney Eileen M. Decker. “As this case shows, children everywhere are vulnerable to such predators, including children right here in Los Angeles.
“The Internet has helped to enable the child sex tourism industry by making the world a smaller place, but this case, and others like it by my office, show that such international predators can and will be brought to justice,” she said.
According to an affidavit filed in support of the criminal complaint, the investigation began earlier this month after undercover agents encountered Quinn on a social networking site that caters to individuals with a sexual interest in children.
Quinn told an undercover agent that he was traveling to Los Angeles and wanted to “meet up with a dad who shares his young ones,” according to the affidavit.
He explained to the agent he was hoping to meet “other pervs” in the U.S. and ultimately agreed to pay a human trafficker $250 to provide him with a young boy with whom he could engage in illicit sex, the document alleges.
On Saturday, Quinn allegedly went to a Los Angeles-area hotel expecting to meet with three fellow child predators for a party, during which the men would engage in sex with boys provided by the sex trafficker.
Quinn went to the hotel room not realizing the men inside were actually undercover operatives, the document states.
A short time later, another undercover agent, posing as the sex trafficker, arrived to collect payment for the children. After Quinn handed the sex trafficker his money, law enforcement authorities came into the hotel room and took him into custody, according to federal prosecutors.
— Wire reports
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