DOJ: Former Federal Inspector Traveled to NYC to Sexually Abuse Minors
A 62-year-old former federal inspector was charged with one count of attempting to entice a minor to engage in sexual activity, the Department of Justice (DOJ) announced on July 2.
Jesse Rodriguez from St. Paul, Minnesota, used to work as an inspector with the Federal Protective Service of the Department of Homeland Security. He was arrested on July 1 after he traveled to New York City to meet up with a minor as part of an undercover operation.
A court complaint (pdf) alleges that Rodriguez communicated via text and email with an individual he believed to be the mother of two minor girls. He made plans to meet with the mother at a coffee shop in Manhattan before going to her apartment to engage in sexual activity with the underage daughters. The mother was played by an undercover officer.
Upon his arrest outside the coffee shop, he was found in possession of condoms, lubricant, and restraints.
If convicted, he faces a mandatory minimum term of 10 years in prison and a maximum term of life in prison, according to the DOJ. On July 1, he was presented at a Manhattan federal court, where he was ordered to be detained, pending trial.
Over a thousand text messages were exchanged between the two from April to June this year on the social media application Paltalk.
“Yeah going to do her in five positions. So after taking [Minor-1’s] virginity and being with her for awhile, then it’s [Minor-2] and then you,” Rodriguez texted the undercover officer, according to court records. Rodriguez had been told by the officer that the minors were aged 8 and 13, respectively.
In a DOJ press release, U.S. Attorney Geoffrey S. Berman said, “As alleged, Jesse Rodriguez traveled to New York yesterday in the evil yet erroneous belief that he would engage in sex with two children.
“He allegedly possessed condoms and restraints for that purpose. Thanks to HSI and the NYPD, he was the one who was handcuffed, and now faces prosecution.”
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