Darryl Owen Walizer, 42, is accused in a two-count indictment, returned Tuesday, of using the Internet to solicit the minor for the purpose of engaging in sexual activity. The alleged actions occurred between February 17 and March 12.
The case was initiated after ICE received information from the Garland, Texas, Police Department that the defendant had contacted and solicited sex from one of its undercover detectives, who was posing online as a 14-year-old girl. When Walizer arrived at McCarran International Airport March 12 to meet the "girl" he believed was arriving on a flight with her mother, he was arrested by ICE agents.
"Persons who use interstate commerce, such as the Internet, to persuade and entice minors to have sex, will be investigated and prosecuted by the federal government," said Nevada U.S. Attorney Daniel G. Bogden. "The penalties are severe for these crimes, and there is no parole in the federal system."
Walizer, who has prior convictions for solicitation of a juvenile in Virginia and Ohio, is scheduled to make his initial appearance in federal court March 26. If convicted, he faces 20 years to life in prison, and lifetime supervised release.
"Like an increasing number of child sex predators, the accused discovered that there is no anonymity in cyberspace for those who use the Internet to stalk young victims," said Stephen Usiak, acting assistant special agent in charge of the ICE Office of Investigations in Las Vegas. "ICE will continue to work closely with its federal and local law enforcement counterparts to protect our nation's children from sexual predators who mistakenly believe the Internet shields them from detection."
The case against Walizer is the result of Operation Predator, an ongoing ICE initiative to identify, investigate, and arrest those who prey on children, and the U.S. Department of Justice's Project Safe Childhood (PSC). Led by United States Attorneys' Offices and the Criminal Division's Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section, PSC mobilizes federal, state, and local resources to locate, apprehend, and prosecute individuals who exploit children via the Internet, as well as to identify and rescue victims.
ICE encourages the reporting of suspected child predators 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 & Exploited Children, an Operation Predator partner, at 1-800-843-5678 or http://www.cybertipline.com.