News and Press Releases

Man Who Solicited Sex from Boy on Craigslist Sentenced to 10 Years in Prison

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
March 22, 2010

Las Vegas, Nev. – A local man who posted an advertisement on Craigslist.com seeking a sexual encounter with a young boy, has been sentenced to ten years in prison and lifetime supervised release for his conviction for coercion and enticement of a minor, announced Daniel G. Bogden, United States Attorney for the District of Nevada.

Thomas Comans, III, 52, was sentenced on Friday, March 19, 2010, by U.S. District Judge Roger L. Hunt. Comans was indicted in October 2007 and convicted by a federal jury on December 9, 2009.

In October 2007, a law enforcement agent working undercover for the Michigan Attorney General's Office High Technology Crime Unit contacted the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department (Metro) to report that he had information regarding a person living in Las Vegas who was believed to be seeking sex with juveniles via the Internet. The person was identified as Thomas Comans, a part-owner of Cold Water Pools in Las Vegas.

On October 10, 2007, Comans had placed an obscene and graphic advertisement in the "men seeking men" personals sections of Craigslist.com indicating that he wanted to experience sex with a young boy. The undercover agent responded to the advertisement stating that he was a 13-year-old boy from Michigan who was staying with his mother at a hotel on the Las Vegas Strip. Several email conversations transpired, and then an undercover Metro Detective began communicating with Comans via Yahoo instant messaging. The undercover detective and Comans engaged in many graphic and sexually explicit conversations, and Comans ultimately arranged to meet with the boy on October 10, 2007, at 8:30 p.m. at an arcade in the hotel where the boy said he was staying. Comans went to the arcade on the pre-arranged meeting date and time, and was arrested by Metro Detectives. Comans was searched subsequent to arrest, and law enforcement officers recovered a handwritten note which contained information and directions about the meeting location. Comans was also in possession of male sexual performance-enhancing pills which were concealed inside a folded piece of paper. During a subsequent search of Coman's residence in Las Vegas, law enforcement officers found condoms and a bottle of lubricant.

The case was investigated by the FBI and Metro as part of the Innocent Images and Internet Crimes Against Children Task Forces. It was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorneys Nancy J. Koppe and Kishan Nair.

The case was brought as part of Project Safe Childhood, a nationwide initiative to combat the growing epidemic of child sexual exploitation and abuse launched in May 2006 by the Department of Justice. Led by United States Attorneys' Offices and the Criminal Division's Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section (CEOS), Project Safe Childhood marshals federal, state and local resources to better locate, apprehend and prosecute individuals who exploit children via the Internet, as well as to identify and rescue victims. For more information about Project Safe Childhood, please visit www.projectsafechildhood.gov.

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