A Florida man was sentenced to 15 years behind prison bars on Tuesday followed by 25 years of supervised release after he admitted to traveling to Colombia to have sex with child prostitutes, according to Sun Sentinel.
After receiving a tip about a U.S citizen traveling to Colombian resorts to have sex with underage girls, a male informant began exchanging messages with 46-year-old Dennis De Jesus of North Lauderdale, Florida, on Facebook for information.
De Jesus openly admitted to traveling to Colombian resorts where he’d meet with child prostitutes and have sex with them. He also added that he filmed the sexual encounter during his last trip to Colombia.
— Sun Sentinel (@SunSentinel) June 30, 2015
On October 11, 2014, North Lauderdale police officials searched De Jesus’ home where they uncovered a video that was taken in June 2013 that showed several underage girls engaging in sexual activity. Police also found other videos of young girls wearing masks and costumes, which were the same sexual costumes found in his home.
De Jesus was arrested and charged with “engaging in illicit sexual conduct in a foreign place, enticing or coercing underage girls into sexual activity, and possession of child pornography” in which he pled guilty to in April 2014.
Investigators also stumbled upon text messages between him and an underage prostitute, 14, in which he shared pictures of costumes and “other presents he intended on taking her as partial payment for the sexual services she was going to provide.”
Before his sentencing, he told Judge James Cohn that he made several attempts to live a “normal life” and to stay away from child prostitutes but was “tempted by the consenting practices of that people and culture.”
“I got lost and corrupted… I’ve never set out to hurt anyone … I just made a stupid mistake, that’s all.”
“The victimization of children and the elderly is the most reprehensible of all criminal acts for these are the members of our society who are most vulnerable,” the judge responded. “These were girls, ages 14 and 16.”
The North Lauderdale judge sentenced De Jesus to 15 years in prison followed by 25 years of supervised release. He was also prohibited from being around children, and the judge ordered De Jesus to seek sex offender treatment.