U.S. Attorney's Office
Middle District of Florida
(813) 274-6000
April 22, 2015

Texas Man Indicted for Attempted Sexual Enticement of a Minor

ORLANDO, FL—United States Attorney A. Lee Bentley, III announces the return of an indictment charging Michael Doherty (51, Texas) with attempted sexual enticement of a minor. If convicted, he faces a mandatory minimum term of 10 years, up to life, in federal prison. The indictment also notifies Doherty that the United States intends to forfeit the electronic media that is alleged to have been used in the commission of the offense.

According to court documents, on March 10, 2015, an FBI agent acting in an undercover capacity (“UC”) responded to an Internet advertisement that Doherty had posted about incestuous sexual encounters. The UC responded to the ad posing as the father of a 10-year-old daughter that he was sexually abusing. Over the next several days, Doherty and the UC discussed the UC’s abuse of his “daughter.” Doherty told the UC that he wanted to watch the UC have sex with the child, and also requested naked photos of the child.

Doherty later told the UC that he traveled to Florida on business and wanted to “watch” the UC and the child. Over the course of the next several days, Doherty and the UC continued to discuss Doherty’s plans to visit. Doherty sent the UC numerous explicit pictures of himself, and he told the UC that when they met, he wanted to have sex with the 10-year-old girl.

On April 8, 2015, Doherty traveled from Miami to Lake Mary, and rented a hotel room. On his way, he stopped and bought a present for the child. When Doherty left his hotel and approached the “father” with whom he had been communicating, he was arrested.

An indictment is merely a formal charge that a defendant has committed one or more violations of federal criminal law, and every defendant is presumed innocent unless, and until, proven guilty.

This case was investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation. It will be prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Joseph M. Schuster.

This case was 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 United States Attorneys’ Offices and the Criminal Division’s Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section (CEOS), Project Safe Childhood marshals federal, state, and local resources to locate, apprehend, and prosecute individuals who sexually exploit children, and to identify and rescue victims. For more information about Project Safe Childhood, please visit www.justice.gov/psc.

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