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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Western District of Virginia

Friday, June 17, 2011

Stuart's Draft Woman Sentenced For Sex Crime

Barbara Case Traveled To Australia And Had Sex With A Minor

HARRISONBURG, VIRGINIA -- A 39-year-old woman from Stuart’s Draft, who has admitted to traveling overseas and engaging in multiple sex acts with an underage boy, was sentenced this afternoon in the United States District Court for the Western District of Virginia in Harrisonburg.

Barbara Renee Case, 39, who previously waived her right to be Indicted and pled guilty to a one count Information charging her with traveling in foreign commerce and engaging in illicit sexual conduct with a minor, was sentenced today in the United States District Court for the Western District of Virginia in Harrisonburg to 30 months of federal incarceration and will be required to register as a sex offender following her prison term.

“Ms. Case was held accountable today for her sexual victimization of a 15-year-old boy,” United States Attorney Timothy J. Heaphy said today. “Her actions fit the profile of a child predator, as she initiated contact with her victim via the internet and telephone and developed a trusting relationship that turned sexual. This case demonstrates our commitment to identify and apprehend predators, even when they move through jurisdictions and cross international lines.”

"Those who travel abroad to exploit children and believe they can evade detection and prosecution by committing child sex crimes overseas are mistaken," said John P. Torres, special agent in charge, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s (ICE), Homeland Security Investigations. "We are vigorously pursuing this type of investigation and the perpetrators are being brought back to the United States to face justice."

Case previously admitted that in December 2007, when she was 36, she met a 15-year-old boy living in Australia while playing an online video game. Case and the victim began a substantial online relationship and often engaged in graphic, sexually explicit conversation, both online and on the telephone.

They often spoke about meeting in person and had numerous conversations about the sexual acts they would engage in, should they ever meet. Though none of the images were recovered, Case also admitted to exchanging sexually explicit images with the 15-year-old boy.

In May 2008, Case flew from Washington D.C. to Los Angles to Auckland to Melbourne, Australia, then rented a car and drove to a cabin she had rented. She met the victim on or about May 16, 2008 and over the next several days, until May 27, 2008, Case and the 15-year-old boy engaged in numerous sexual acts, including intercourse and oral sex. Case also admitted to taking photographs of the two having sex and of the victim nude, though no photos have been recovered.

An investigation in Australia began after the 15-year-old boy’s parents reported him missing. Authorities eventually located the cabin and found the two inside. When authorities arrived, at first, Case did not answer the door. When she did eventually open the door, authorities observed the 15-year-old victim putting on a T-shirt.

Case was prosecuted in Australia for two acts of sexual penetration of a minor. She served 112 days in prison on those charges.

The investigation of the case was conducted by the Federal Bureau of Investigation, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement and authorities in Australia. Assistant United States Attorney Nancy S. Healey is prosecuting the case for the United States.

Updated April 14, 2015