A Jamaica man will be spending a long time in federal prison for enticing an underage Australian girl he met online into coming to America for a sexual tryst.
Sean Price, 40, was convicted back in December 2017 on federal charges including interstate and foreign enticement to engage in sexual activity, interstate and foreign transportation of a minor to engage in sexual activity, a Mann Act violation and attempted sexual exploitation of a child.
At a sentencing hearing on Sept. 21, U.S. District Judge Nicholas Garaufis ordered Price to serve 35 years behind bars and another 10 years of supervised release. He must also make restitution to the girl’s family.
Law enforcement sources said that Price first made contact with the girl in the fall of 2016 online. The relationship escalated by January of the following year into daily messages through Facebook, much of which were sexual in nature.
Federal prosecutors said that Price repeatedly communicated his desire to have sex with the girl, and worked to persuade her to come to the United States to meet with him. Knowing she was underage, he urged her to make the journey halfway across the globe without her parents or law enforcement finding out.
To that end, authorities said, Price discussed obtaining a fake passport for her so she could travel internationally, even going as far as to offer to impersonate her father in order to get her through airport security in the United States.
When she told Price that she did not need parental permission to fly internationally, prosecutors said, Price responded, “So you coming to papa?”
Finally, after months of planning, Price wired $900 to the girl, who then purchased a plane ticket to Los Angeles. Price was waiting for her in L.A. when she arrived there in April 2017; using a rental car, he then drove the girl across the United States back to his home in Jamaica.
Through a joint investigation by federal authorities in the U.S. and Australia, law enforcement agents found the Australian girl and Price four weeks later. In statements made to authorities following his arrests, Price admitted that he and the girl engaged in sex repeatedly during their cross-country trip and while she was living with him in Queens.
According to U.S. Attorney Richard Donoghue, the girl’s family recently informed U.S. District Court that they’re still struggling with the trauma inflicted by Price and her journey to America.
“Sean Price preyed upon the vulnerabilities of a young teenage girl, luring her across the world and away from her home for his own illicit purposes,” Donoghue said on Sept. 21. “With today’s sentence, Price has been held accountable for that predatory conduct.”