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Press Release

St. Thomas Man Arrested And Charged With Using Internet To Coerce And Entice Three Minor Girls

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, District of Virgin Islands

St. Thomas Man Arrested and Charged with Using Internet to Coerce and Entice Three Minor Girls St. Thomas, USVI – Tony Jefferson Browne, 30, of St. Thomas was arrested today and charged with using the Internet to coerce and entice three female minors to engage in sexual activity, announced United States Attorney Ronald W. Sharpe.

Browne made his initial appearance in District Court before U.S. Magistrate Judge Ruth Miller, and was ordered held without bail pending a detention and preliminary hearing on June 12, 2013. According to documents filed in District Court, Browne made contact with the minors on Facebook, developed a friendship with them, and then persuaded them to send him nude photos of themselves. After receiving the photos, Browne threatened to place the minors’ nude photos on the Internet if they did not have sex with him.

At the time of the arrest, Browne was a self-employed plumber. If convicted, Browne faces a statutory minimum penalty of 15 years in prison.

This case was investigated by the Department of Homeland Security, Homeland Security Investigations. It is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Everard Potter.

Suspected child sexual exploitation or missing children may be reported to the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children via its toll-free 24-hour hotline at 202-514-5678, or to Homeland Security Investigations at (340) 693-2250.

The public is reminded that a criminal complaint is merely a charging document and is not evidence of guilt. A defendant is presumed innocent until and unless proven guilty.

Updated June 22, 2015