TALLAHASSEE, FL – LAWFUEL – The Legal Newswire – Florida Attorney General Bill McCollum, acting United States Attorney James R. Klindt, and Michael J. Folmar, Special Agent in Charge of the Jacksonville Division of the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) today announced that a South Carolina man pled guilty to the Federal charge of interstate travel with intent to engage in illicit sexual conduct with a minor. James Dove, of Beech Island, South Carolina, entered his plea today in the U.S. District Court in Jacksonville. Dove, 27, could face up to 30 years in prison, a fine of up to $250,000, and a term of supervised release from five years to life when he is sentenced at a later date.
According to court documents, on April 17, 2007, Dove drove his car from Beech Island, South Carolina, to Jacksonville, Florida for the purpose of engaging in illicit sexual conduct with someone he believed was a 13-year old girl. The “girl” was in fact an undercover investigator with the Florida Attorney General’s Child Predator CyberCrime Unit who had been chatting online with Dove for approximately two weeks. Even after he had been arrested, Dove still believed he had been chatting with a real girl and asked authorities to tell her that “she should watch out for guys who do this sort of thing.”
“We have seen time and time again that internet child predators will go to extraordinary lengths to victimize children,” said Florida Attorney General Bill McCollum. “This sort of behavior is despicable and very dangerous. We are committed to presenting a united front against these individuals.”
The case was investigated by the Florida Attorney General’s Child Predator CyberCrime Unit, the FBI and the Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office.
Assistant United States Attorney D. Rodney Brown is prosecuting the case.
This case is part of Project Safe Childhood, a national initiative designed to protect children from online exploitation and abuse. Created in February 2006 by United States Attorney General Alberto R. Gonzales, Project Safe Childhood marshals federal, state and local resources to better locate, apprehend, and prosecute individuals who exploit children via the internet. The initiative also focuses on identifying and rescuing victims. For more information on Project Safe Childhood, please visit http://www.projectsafechildhood.gov.
The Florida Attorney General’s Child Predator CyberCrime Unit is a member of the North Florida Internet Crimes Against Children (ICAC) Task Force, a federally funded program working nationwide to educate citizens and support law enforcement to stop these crimes, and the FBI Cyber Task Force in Jacksonville. The unit has made 48 arrests since October 2005 and has referred several cases to be prosecuted by Federal authorities. More information on the Florida Attorney General’s CyberCrime initiative is available at http://www.myfloridalegal.com.