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Child Exploitation
11/05/2009

Missouri man charged with having sex with a minor overseas

SPRINGFIELD, Mo. - A Missouri man who allegedly had sex with a minor while traveling overseas on a missionary trip was charged in federal court on Thursday. The charges resulted from an investigation conducted by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE).

Colby L. Williams, 24, of Joplin, Mo., was arrested at his residence Nov. 5 and charged in a criminal complaint filed in the Western District of Missouri. He was released on bond after surrendering his passport to the court.

The criminal complaint alleges that Williams had sex with a 14-year-old girl while traveling with a mission group in Cyprus. According to court documents, Williams traveled to Cyprus in 2007 with Team Expansion, a missionary group from Louisville, Ky. During the trip he had various sexual encounters with a 14-year-old girl. The missionary group immediately arranged for Williams' return to the United States.

"Protecting children both here and abroad from sexual predators has been and will continue to be a top priority for ICE," said Gary Hartwig, special agent in charge of the ICE Office of Investigations in Chicago.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Michael S. Oliver, Western District of Missouri, is prosecuting this case.