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Press Release

U.S. Attorney Charges 40-Year-Old Man With Coercion And Enticement Of A Minor

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Southern District of New York

Damian Williams, the United States Attorney for the Southern District of New York, James Smith, the Assistant Director in Charge of the New York Field Office of the Federal Bureau of Investigation (“FBI”), and Melvin Padilla, the Chief of the Bedford Police Department, announced the arrest of JOHN LORD.  LORD is charged with persuading, inducing, enticing, and coercing a 15-year-old minor to engage in sexual activity.  LORD was presented yesterday before U.S. Magistrate Judge Andrew E. Krause in White Plains federal court.

U.S. Attorney Damian Williams said: “This case underlines the urgent need for law enforcement to continue its efforts to protect children from those who prey on them.  As this arrest shows, we will use every tool available to law enforcement to investigate and prosecute those who sexually exploit children.” 

FBI Assistant Director in Charge James Smith said: "Lord’s alleged actions, enticing a vulnerable member of our society – a child – for sexual activity, are abhorrent.  The FBI takes the alleged crime very seriously, we are tireless in our efforts to investigate and hold accountable any person who harms a child.”

Bedford Police Chief Melvin Padilla said: “The safety and security of our residents is our primary focus, and thanks to the diligent work of our officers and the cooperation and assistance from our federal partners, the defendant was quickly identified and apprehended.”

According to the Complaint filed on August 31, 2023, in White Plains federal court:[1]

On or about August 30, 2023, LORD persuaded and enticed a 15-year-old minor (“Victim-1”), who he had met and communicated with on an online application, to engage in sexual activity with him. 

On August 30, 2023, LORD sent text messages to Victim-1 asking to meet to engage in sexual activity.  Hours later, LORD was discovered with Victim-1 in a wooded area in Katonah, New York.  LORD was naked from the waist down with his penis exposed.  Victim-1 was in his underwear.  When approached, LORD grabbed his underwear and fled.

Later that evening, LORD was apprehended and arrested by the Putnam County Sheriff’s Office with assistance from the Bedford Police Department.  LORD was interviewed by Bedford Police and admitted that he engaged in sexual activity with Victim-1 on August 30, 2023, as well as on prior occasions.  On August 30, 2023, LORD was charged in Bedford, New York, with Criminal Sexual Act in the Third Degree. 

Mr. Williams stated that the investigation is ongoing.  Mr. Williams requests that any individuals who may have encountered JOHN LORD or whose children may have had any communications with LORD to contact the FBI at 1-800-CALL-FBI or  

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LORD, 40, of Sedona, Arizona, is charged with one count of coercion and enticement, which carries a mandatory minimum sentence of 10 years in prison and a maximum sentence of life in prison. 

The statutory minimum and maximum sentences are prescribed by Congress and are provided here for informational purposes only, as any sentencing of the defendant will be determined by the judge.

Mr. Williams praised the efforts of the FBI’s Westchester County Safe Streets Task Force, the Bedford Police Department, the Putnam County Sheriff’s Office, and the Westchester County District Attorney’s Office in connection with this investigation.  He added that the investigation is ongoing.          

The prosecution is being handled by the Office’s White Plains Division.  Assistant U.S. Attorney Shaun E. Werbelow is in charge of the prosecution.

The charges contained in the Complaint are merely accusations, and the defendant is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty. 

[1] As the introductory phrase signifies, the entirety of the text of the Complaint and the description of the Complaint set forth herein constitute only allegations, and every fact described should be treated as an allegation.


Nicholas Biase
(212) 637-2600

Updated September 1, 2023

Press Release Number: 23-303