California Man Who Traveled to Las Vegas to Have Sex with Minor Sentenced to Five Years in Prison
Las Vegas, Nev. - A California man who was convicted by a jury in August of traveling from California to Las Vegas to engage in sex with a juvenile, has been sentenced to five years in prison, announced Daniel G. Bogden, United States Attorney for the District of Nevada.
KEVIN ERIC CURTIN, age 43, of Anaheim, California, was sentenced yesterday by U.S. District Judge Robert C. Jones He was convicted by a jury on August 3, 2004, of one count of Travel with Intent to Engage in a Sexual Act With a Juvenile and one count of Coercion and Enticement of a Minor, both felonies. CURTIN was also ordered to serve five years of supervised release following his release from prison.
"The U.S. Attorney's Office for the District of Nevada considers crimes involving the intent to have sex with minors a prosecution priority," said U.S. Attorney Bogden. "Persons who travel to Nevada for this purpose will be prosecuted, and if convicted, punished severely." "I hope that all parents warn their children of the dangers of contacting strangers over the Internet, and take adequate precautions to protect their families."
On February 11 and February 12, 2004, KEVIN CURTIN engaged in "chats" on the Internet with a person he believed to be a 14-year-old girl living in Nevada. The person was actually a Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department Officer working with the Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force and posing as the 14-year-old girl. In the online "chats," CURTIN discussed engaging in sexual acts with the 14-year-old girl and meeting her in Las Vegas for that purpose. CURTIN told the girl he was 42 years old and divorced, and that he lived in Anaheim, California. Early in the first "chat," CURTIN directed the discussion to sex, and asked the girl to provide him with details about her sexual urges and if she had ever been with an older guy. CURTIN told her that he was planning to travel to Las Vegas on Friday, February 13, 2004, and wanted to know if she would meet him. CURTIN sent the girl a photograph of himself, and made arrangements to meet her at a casino bowling alley in Las Vegas.
On February 13, 2004, CURTIN traveled from California to Las Vegas. Two days later, on February 15, 2004, CURTIN went to the casino bowling alley and was observed by law enforcement looking around for the girl. CURTIN was arrested a short while later, outside the casino. Investigating agents seized a personal digital assistant from CURTIN, which was later found to contain numerous stories pertaining to sex with minors.
Over the last two and one-half years, the U.S. Attorney's Office for the District of Nevada has experienced a significant increase in referrals of cases involving child pornography. Between January 1, 2002, and October 6, 2004, 78 defendants were charged in the District with crimes ranging from receipt and possession of child pornography, interstate travel with intent to engage in a sexual act with a juvenile, and using a computer to entice a juvenile to have sex. Many of those charged have been convicted and sentenced to significant periods of imprisonment.
In southern Nevada, the Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force, which includes the FBI, Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department and U.S. Secret Service, has been pro-actively pursuing and investigating cases involving the exploitation of children and minors over the internet. Internet Crimes Against Children Task Forces are federally funded through the Department of Justice. Federal funding for the program nearly doubled in FY 2003 (to $12.5 million), and the President's request for FY 2005 includes a $2 million increase to $14.5 million. The task forces provide skills, equipment, and personnel to assist authorities combat child sexual exploitation.
Report information about child pornography to your Internet Service Provider, your local FBI or U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement office, or to the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children at (800) 843-5678 or www.cybertipline.com.
The case was investigated by agents and detectives with the Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force, and is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorneys Nancy J. Koppe and Margaret M. Stanish.