Former Florida Resident Pleads Guilty To Attempted Sex Trafficking In Ecuador
Orlando, Florida – United States Attorney A. Lee Bentley, III announces that Patrick R. Minga (50, formerly of Cape Coral) pleaded guilty yesterday to attempting to induce and facilitate, for his own financial gain, the travel of an individual from Brevard County, Florida, to Quito, Ecuador, so that the individual could engage in illicit sexual conduct with minor girls. Minga faces a maximum penalty of 30 years in federal prison. His sentencing hearing has been scheduled for November 20, 2014.
During the change of plea hearing, Minga admitted that he advertised, on Craigslist, a sex tourism business in Ecuador that could facilitate lodging, transportation, meals, and unlimited access to females for a fee. An undercover task force agent observed the ad and contacted Minga. Over the course of several months, Minga tried to induce and arrange the travel of the undercover agent from Florida to Quito, where Minga advised that he could provide sexual encounters with minors as young as 13 and 14 years of age.
On March 2, 2014, Minga traveled from Ecuador to the United States, where he was arrested by agents in Huntsville, Alabama. Minga will remain detained pending further proceedings.
This case was investigated by the Brevard County Sheriff’s Office and U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s Homeland Security Investigations. It is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Ilianys Rivera Miranda.
It is another case was brought as part of Project Safe Childhood, a nationwide initiative launched in May 2006 by the Department of Justice to combat the growing epidemic of child sexual exploitation and abuse. Led by the United States Attorneys' Offices and the Criminal Division's Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section, Project Safe Childhood marshals federal, state, and local resources to locate, apprehend, and prosecute individuals who sexually exploit children, and to identify and rescue victims. For more information about Project Safe Childhood, please visit www.usdoj.gov/psc.