Sex Offender Arrested at LAX Attempting to Leave U.S., Allegedly Failed to Provide Authorities Notice of His International Travel Plans
LOS ANGELES – A registered sex offender has been charged in a criminal complaint alleging he attempted to travel from Los Angeles to Egypt without giving law enforcement advance notice of his foreign travel plans as required by federal law, the Justice Department announced today.
Jehovany Sanchez, 36, of South Gate, was charged on Friday with one count of committing an international travel reporting violation. Sanchez made his initial court appearance on late Friday afternoon in United States District Court. His bond was set at $50,000 and his arraignment has been scheduled for October 22.
According to an affidavit filed with the complaint, on September 30, without providing to law enforcement any notice of foreign travel, Sanchez allegedly attempted to fly from Los Angeles International Airport to Cairo with a layover in Paris. Sanchez allegedly boarded the Paris-bound flight, which left its gate and prepared for takeoff, but was directed by law enforcement to return to the gate. Law enforcement had been notified that Sanchez was a ticketed passenger and sex offender on the flight who had not notified them of his foreign travel plans, the affidavit states. Sanchez was ordered to exit the airplane and he was arrested at the gate, according to the affidavit.
In 2012, Sanchez was convicted in Ventura County Superior Court of committing a lewd act upon a child. According to his arrest report in that case, Sanchez – then 27 years old – engaged in illicit sexual contact with a 15-year-old girl. He was sentenced to two years in state prison and is required to register as a sex offender for life under the federal Sex Offender Registration and Notification Act (SORNA).
On Sanchez’s signed sex offender registry document dated March 30, he initialed next to a statement that reads, “Federal law requires me to notify my registering agency no less than 21 days before I intend to travel internationally,” according to the affidavit.
A complaint contains allegations that a defendant has committed a crime. Every defendant is presumed innocent until and unless proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt.
If convicted, Sanchez would face a statutory maximum sentence of 10 years in federal prison.
This case was investigated by the United States Marshals Service, United States Customs and Border Protection, the South Gate Police Department, and the Los Angeles Airport Police. The Drug Enforcement Administration provided substantial assistance.
This matter is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Jeremiah M. Levine of the General Crimes Section.