15 July – LAWFUEL – The Law News Network – R. Alexander Acosta, United States Attorney for the Southern District of Florida, Jesus Torres, Special Agent in Charge, Immigration and Customs Enforcement, and Michael S. Clemens, Special Agent in Charge, Federal Bureau of Investigation, announced today that defendant, Laronn Houston, was sentenced after having plead guilty to one (1) count of attempted online enticement of a child, in violation of Title 18, United States Code, Section 2422(b), before United States District Court Judge James I. Cohn in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. Houston was sentenced to a term of sixty (60) months’ imprisonment.
According to information contained in Houston’s plea agreement, during August 2004, Houston used the internet to contact someone he thought was the mother of a fourteen year old girl, but who actually was an undercover deputy with the Palm Beach County Sheriff’s Office. At the time, Houston was in training with the Police Academy at Broward Community College. Houston, among other things, engaged the undercover deputy in sexually explicit internet chats during which he sent the deputy images of child erotica and child pornography. Houston also engaged in sexually explicit telephone conversations with the undercover deputy, who posed as both the mother and the minor daughter. On September 29, 2004, Houston was arrested when he showed up at a location in Delray Beach, Florida, where he and the person he thought was the mother of the minor had agreed to meet. Houston later told officers that he traveled to meet the fourteen year old girl with “the idea” of a possible sexual encounter with her.
Mr. Acosta commended the investigative efforts of the United States Bureau of Immigration and Customs Enforcement, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, and the Palm Beach County Sheriff’s Office. The case was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Kimberly Dunn Abel.
A copy of this press release may be found on the website of the United States Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of Florida at www.usdoj.gov/usao/fls . Related court documents and information may be found on the website of the District Court for the Southern District of Florida at www.flsd.uscourts.gov or on .