ALBANY, NEW YORK - Jonathan Woodworth, age 44, a citizen of Canada, was charged yesterday with attempting to entice and coerce a minor into sexual activity.
The announcement was made by United States Attorney Carla B. Freedman and Janeen DiGuiseppi, Special Agent in Charge of the Albany Field Office of the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI).
According to the criminal complaint, Woodworth exchanged sexually explicit messages over a period of four months with undercover law enforcement officers whom Woodworth believed to be a foster mother and 10-year-old child. Before his arrest, Woodworth traveled by plane and train from the Canadian province of New Brunswick, to Rensselaer County, with a gift for the child with whom Woodworth intended to engage in sexual activity in a cabin he rented in advance of his travel.
The charges in the complaint are merely accusations. The defendant is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty. If convicted, Woodworth faces at least 10 years and up to life in prison, a term of post-release supervision of at least 5 years and up to life, and a fine of up to $250,000. A defendant’s sentence is imposed by a judge based on the particular statute the defendant is charged with violating, the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines, and other factors.
Woodworth appeared yesterday before United States Magistrate Judge Daniel J. Stewart, who ordered Woodworth detained pending trial.
This case is being investigated by the FBI and its Child Exploitation Task Force, which includes members of federal, state, and local law enforcement agencies. This case is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Ashlyn Miranda as part of Project Safe Childhood.
Launched in May 2006 by the Department of Justice, Project Safe Childhood is led by United States Attorney’s 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 https://www.justice.gov/psc.