Bradenton man arrested by FBI after going to central Florida for a rendezvous
ORLANDO -- A Bradenton man was arrested Thursday on charges of traveling to have sex with two children, according to federal prosecutors.
William Daniel Thompson, 67, had his initial appearance in federal court Friday and is being detained pending trial.
According to a release from U.S. Attorney A. Lee Bentley, III, Thompson faces a minimum of 10 years up to a maximum of life in federal prison if convicted of attempting to persuade, induce and entice a minor to engage in illegal sexual conduct.
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An FBI special agent last Wednesday noticed an advertisement in Craigslist's "all personals" section mentioning a single white male seeking a "family dynamic," according to a criminal complaint.
For the next day, officials said Thompson emailed the undercover agent and indicated he wanted to have sex with agent's supposed children, ages 10 and 13.
On Thursday, Thompson traveled to Altamonte Springs in Seminole County to meet the minors' father for the purpose of engaging in illicit sexual conduct, according to a release. That's when he was arrested.
Thompson admitted to law enforcement officers he had traveled there to meet with the father of the two children with whom he had been emailing, according to the release.
"Thompson stated that his purpose in going to Altamonte Springs was to explore the possibility of having sex with a 10-year-old girl," according to the release. "The investigation revealed Thompson has been involved in the bondage, dominance, sadomasochistic lifestyle for about 10 years."
The case was investigated by the FBI and is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Ilianys Rivera Miranda.
According to the release, the case was brought as part of Project Safe Childhood, a nationwide initiative launched in May 2006 by the U.S. Department of Justice to combat child sexual exploitation and abuse. The initiative is led by the U.S. Attorneys' Offices and the Criminal Division's Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section. Project Safe Childhood marshals federal, state and local resources to prosecute those who sexually exploit children and rescue victims.
For more information about Project Safe Childhood, go to projectsafechildhood.gov.
Amaris Castillo, law enforcement/island reporter, can be reached at 941-745-7051. You can follow her on Twitter@AmarisCastillo.