FORT WORTH, Texas - A former Dallas County detention officer was sentenced on Friday to 10 years in federal prison for enticing a minor girl to engage in sexual acts, announced U.S. Attorney James T. Jacks of the Northern District of Texas. The case was investigated by the Fort Worth Police Department and by the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) Office of Homeland Security Investigations (HSI).
U.S. District Judge John McBryde also ordered that Roy Mathew, 31, from Rowlett, Texas, register as a sex offender and serve a lifetime of supervised release. Mathew has been in federal custody since March 2010, when he pleaded guilty to one count of enticement of a child.
According to documents filed in the case, on Sept. 4, 2009, a Fort Worth Police Department detective, acting in an undercover capacity, assumed the role of a 13-year-old girl in a chat room on the Internet. Over the course of the following week, Mathew communicated with the undercover officer, believing the officer to be a 13-year-old girl.
The conversations turned sexually graphic. Mathew stated that he would like to perform sexual acts with the girl and showed her sexually explicit photos of himself. He arranged to meet her at a convenience store in Fort Worth, Texas.
On the day of the meeting, Sept. 11, 2009, Mathew arrived at the specified location and was arrested. A digital camera and condoms were located in his vehicle. A search warrant was then executed at his residence and images of a young teenage girl that were sent by the Fort Worth officer were located on his computer. At the time of his arrest, Mathew was employed as a Dallas County detention officer.
In a post-arrest interview, Mathew verified his computer screen name, admitted he was communicating with someone who he believed was a 13-year-old girl and admitted sending, via web-cam, sexually explicit images of himself.
Assistant U.S. Attorney Alex C. Lewis, Northern District of Texas, prosecuted this case.
This investigation is part of Operation Predator, a nationwide ICE initiative to protect children from sexual predators, including those who travel overseas for sex with minors, Internet child pornographers, criminal alien sex offenders, and child sex traffickers. Since Operation Predator was launched in July 2003, ICE agents have arrested more than 12,800 individuals.
ICE encourages the public to report suspected child predators and any suspicious activity through its toll-free hotline at 1-866-DHS-2ICE. This hotline is staffed around the clock by investigators.
Suspected child sexual exploitation or missing children may be reported to the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children, an Operation Predator partner, at 1-800-843-5678 or http://www.cybertipline.com.
This case was also brought as part of Project Safe Childhood, a nationwide initiative launched in May 2006 by the Department of Justice, to combat the growing epidemic of child sexual exploitation and abuse. Led by U.S. Attorneys' offices and the Criminal Division's Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section (CEOS), Project Safe Childhood marshals federal, state and local resources to better locate, apprehend and prosecute individuals who exploit children via the Internet, as well as to identify and rescue victims.
For more information about Project Safe Childhood, visit www.projectsafechildhood.gov.