LONGVIEW (CBSDFW.COM) — A previously convicted child sex offender in Texas has been sentenced to more than 30 years in federal prison for attempted childhood.
Keith Lee Merchant, 41, pleaded guilty to one attempt to seduce a child in October. On March 25, he was sentenced to 365 months in federal prison.
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In 2018, a federal agent acting as an undercover agent responded to an online ad titled “Taboo Family Fans – M4F 37 (Nearby)” on a social media website, according to court documents. Within minutes, the ad creator, Merchant, replied to the undercover investigator and began a three-week sexually explicit conversation via social media and Kik, a popular messaging app for teenagers.
In contact, the merchant informed the Undercover Investigator that he had previously had a sexual relationship with a young girl and wanted to have a sexual relationship with the Undercover Investigator’s 10-year-old daughter. It was. The merchant traveled from his longview home to meet a 10-year-old girl and said she would spend the night with her. He also promised to bring a girl’s lingerie, saying, “I rarely missed a gift … I hope she likes purple.”
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Longview is about 120 miles east of Dallas.
The merchant traveled to a Garland apartment and believed that he met his mother and daughter there. When he arrived, FBI agents and Garland police officers detained him. Authorities later found an overnight bag, a pink plush toy, a candy box, and purple lingerie in his pickup.
Asked by law enforcement, the merchant allowed ads to be posted online and agreed that the term “taboo” in the screen name means “minor.” The web history of the merchant’s cell phone is revealed, internet searches and bookmarks are displayed, all showing an interest in sexually exploiting children.
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The FBI Dallas Field Office and Garland Police Department conducted the investigation. Assistant Federal Attorney Camille Sparks has charged the case.
Texas Sex Offender Keith Merchant sentenced to over 30 years in prison to seduce a 10-year-old girl – CBS Dallas / Fort Worth
Source link Texas Sex Offender Keith Merchant sentenced to over 30 years in prison to seduce a 10-year-old girl – CBS Dallas / Fort Worth