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VENTURA COUNTY NEWS

Texan Guilty in Internet Sex Case Involving Girl, 14

March 17, 2001|DAVID KELLY | TIMES STAFF WRITER

A Texas man who arranged to have sex with a 14-year-old Camarillo girl after meeting her in an Internet chat room is facing 30 years in prison, the U.S. attorney's office in Los Angeles said.

A jury found 23-year-old Jamie Newburn of Jacksonville guilty on Thursday of traveling to another state to engage in criminal sexual activity and of using the Internet to try to induce a minor into illegal sexual activity.

Assistant U.S. Atty. James W. Spertus said Newburn entered a non-sexual chat room, where he found the Camarillo girl. The pair had a sexual correspondence for several months, Spertus said.

"He described what sex activities he wanted to engage in," Spertus said. "They talked about plans to meet."

Newburn took a bus to California and arranged to meet the girl Nov. 23 at a Motel 6 in Camarillo. But Ventura County Sheriff's Deputy Michael Fisher was on patrol that night and saw a young girl walking down the road. He stopped and asked where she was going.

After talking to the girl, the deputy discovered she was going to meet Newburn. He went to the motel and found the suspect in a room with sexually-oriented paraphernalia.

Spertus said the Internet has given pedophiles new ways to prey on children.

"I do about 12 Internet crimes a year," he said. "It has really empowered pedophiles."

Newburn will be sentenced next month.

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