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Huron man, 24, tries to lure girl in Florida

Courtney Astolfi • Aug 27, 2014 at 2:40 PM

A Huron man is now behind bars in Florida after he allegedly tried to solicit sex from an undercover agent posing as an underage girl during a family vacation there in late March.

After his arrest, investigators allegedly found more than 100 child porn videos and photos on his phone.

Zachary Perdue, 24, of the 900 block of Salem Drive, was charged with 10 counts of possessing child pornography, three counts of transmitting information harmful to minors and one count of using a computer to solicit a minor and traveling to meet a minor for sex, according to Seminole County Sheriff’s Office records.

Perdue was vacationing in the Orlando area March 23 when an undercover agent sent a response to an Internet sex ad Perdue posted, said Seminole County spokeswoman Kim Cannaday.

FBI agents told the Orlando Sentinel Perdue posted a sexually graphic ad on Craigslist’s casual encounters section, reading “Hi I’m 24 looking for a lady of any age”

Perdue replied to the undercover agent’s response, believing the agent was a 14-year-old girl, the Sentinel reported.

In those messages, Perdue allegedly sent graphic photos of himself to the “girl” and discussed meeting up for sex. He’d even mentioned meeting the girl in a public place “to make sure it was not a setup” citing the TV show “To Catch a Predator” the Sentinel reported.

Perdue then traveled nearly an hour from his Kissimee hotel room to meet the “girl” at a gas station in a nearby town, according to the Sentinel. When he arrived at the business, FBI agents and officers with local police agencies arrested him, as part of a program called “Operation SafeNet” Cannaday said. Investigators scoured Perdue’s phone, allegedly finding dozens and dozens of child porn videos and photos.

Perdue estimated the ages of those children between five and 10 years old, according to the Sentinel. During interviews, Perdue allegedly said he watched a man molest a child live on the Internet several months ago.

A grand jury in April indicted Perdue for possessing child pornography and using the Internet to persuade a minor to engage in sexual activity. Perdue’s now being held without bond at the John E. Polk Correctional Facility.

According to Erie County court records, Perdue has not been charged with any felonies locally.

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