Authorities say an Ohio man is now facing federal charges after being accused of attempting to purchase a child for sex, reports the Dayton Daily News.
After Craig Maher, 39, allegedly disclosed to a friend that he wanted to “drug a female child between the ages of 4 and 14 and have sex with her,” a law enforcement investigation commenced, according to the Daily News.
Fox 8 Cleveland reports that an informant told authorities about being contacted online by Maher, who said he was willing to pay up to $500 to have sex with a child.
According to an announcement made by Sheriff Richard K. Jones on Friday, Homeland Security took part in the investigation into the alleged actions made by Maher, reports WCMH.
The sheriff noted that evidence related to the case was obtained from Maher’s Fairfield Township home during an extensive search.
WCMH indicates that Sheriff Jones stated,
People like Mr. Maher disgust me, and they do not belong in society. My detectives and Homeland Security worked quickly to take him off the street, and now he is behind bars where he belongs.”
The Daily News writes that federal court documents indicate on April 4, an informant contacted sheriff’s detectives saying an individual named “Craig” made contact on Facebook trying to find a young girl to have sex with.
The report states a meeting was set for April 12 at a local McDonald’s, where the informant showed Maher a photograph of a “prepubescent girl approximately 7 years old,” who court documents say in actuality is now an adult.
According to these documents, Maher looked at the image and said “she’s cute” adding that if the mother of the little girl was “on drugs” they could “do more,” reports the Daily News. The report states the informant indicated to Maher that the girl’s mother was not drug addicted, to which Maher replied, “best case scenario is to drug the child so she won’t wake up.”
The court documents further say that Maher suggested using Benadryl would work “very well” to drug the child. Maher then offered the informant $250 “if they had sex next to the sleeping child” and up to $500 if he [Maher] could have sex with the girl, the Daily News reports. The Ohio man additionally stated that he hoped the informant could locate a mother that is drug addicted so he could then gain custody of the child and go to Michigan.
On April 13, the informant told Maher, a computer programmer, he had set up a meeting to allow him to meet the seven-year-old girl previously discussed. Maher stated he would bring recording equipment and medication to the meeting court documents say, according to the Daily News.
Maher cancelled the appointment on April 14, telling the informant there was an issue with is ex-wife so he couldn’t make it.
The Daily News reports the criminal complaint against Maher indicates he admitted to agents during the search of his residence that he planned to drug the child, have sex with her, and record the encounter. Maher also informed authorities they would find child pornography he had obtained online on his computer.
According to WCMH, Sergeant Jason Owens said of Maher,
He was willing to pay, to rape a little girl and now he can pay the price of going to jail for his intentions… His ultimate goal was to adopt a child so he could have sex with her whenever he wanted. This investigation does not stop here, and we have a lot of work to do.”
Maher has been charged with trying to buy a child for sexual purposes, a federal offense. If convicted, Maher would spend at least 30 years behind bars, the minimum sentence for the charge, according to WCMH.
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