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Press Release

Tampa Man Arrested For Attempted Trafficking Of A Minor

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Middle District of Florida

Tampa, Florida – U.S. Attorney Maria Chapa Lopez announces the arrest of Robert Ray Williams (62, Tampa) on a criminal complaint charging him with attempted human trafficking of a minor. If convicted, Williams faces a minimum mandatory sentence of 10 years, and up to life, in federal prison.

According to the complaint, on June 26, 2019, Williams texted a phone number listed in an online advertisement offering young females for sex. An undercover agent responded to Williams’s inquiry about the girls and offered Williams a 14 and a 15-year-old girl for commercial sex. Williams requested the 14-year-old. Williams was then instructed to meet at a location in Tampa the next day. On June 27, 2019, Williams arrived at the agreed upon location and paid an undercover agent $200 for sex with who he believed was a 14-year-old girl. He then proceeded into a trailer where he believed the child was waiting. Once inside the trailer, Williams was taken into custody.

A criminal complaint is merely an allegation that a defendant has committed one or more violations of federal criminal law, and every defendant is presumed innocent unless, and until, proven guilty.

This case is being investigated by the Department of Homeland Security’s Homeland Security Investigations. It will be prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Candace Rich.  

This 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 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 locate, apprehend, and prosecute individuals who sexually exploit children, and to identify and rescue victims. For more information about Project Safe Childhood, please visit

Updated July 1, 2019

Project Safe Childhood