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Undercover Sting Operation Nets 10 Child Predators

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
DATE: May 2, 2019
CONTACT PERSON: Chelsey Price, 484-502-9976

Media, Pa – Today Delaware County District Attorney Katayoun M. Copeland announced the arrest of ten people as a result of an undercover sting operation focused on child predators. The operation comes at the conclusion of a month-long investigation, during National Sexual Assault Awareness Month and Child Abuse Prevention Month. The operation was conducted by the Delaware County District Attorney’s Criminal Investigation Division (CID) Internet Crime Against Children (ICAC) Task Force, the Pennsylvania State Police, Tinicum Township Police Department, Ridley Township Police Department, Glenolden Borough Police Department, Darby Borough Police Department, Darby Township Police Department, and the Federal Bureau of Investigation.

The following individuals were arrested as a result of the investigation:

jennings_marvinMarvin Gus Jennings, 53, of the 4100 block of Ogden Street in Philadelphia, was arrested following an investigation by Detective Sergeant Kenneth Bellis of CID ICAC unit and Officer Timothy Kearney of the Ridley Township Police Department and member of the Delaware County ICAC Task Force. Officer Kearney posed as a 14-year-old juvenile female and engaged in on-line conversations with a man later identified as Marvin Jennings, who asked whether the juvenile was willing to be have sexual intercourse with an older male and initiated further sexual conversations. On April 29, 2019, Jennings arranged to meet the 14-year old juvenile, asked sexual questions and told the juvenile what clothing to wear. The next day, Jennings arrived at the agreed upon location and was taken into custody by the Ridley Township Police Department. Jennings was charged with attempt to commit statutory sexual assault and related offenses. Magisterial District Judge Vincent D. Gallagher set bail at $500,000 cash. The preliminary hearing is scheduled for May 6, 2019 before Magisterial District Judge Gallagher. Assistant District Attorney Christopher Boggs is prosecuting the case on behalf of the Commonwealth.


merchant_mohammedMohammed S. Merchant, 24, of the 1000 block of Marc Drive in North Brunswick, New Jersey, following an investigation by Detective Lisa DeMartini of the Delaware County District Attorney’s Office Criminal Investigation Division ICAC Task Force. On April 22, 2019, Detective DeMartini met with a concerned parent regarding an individual communicating with their 14-year-old child. After review of the social media messages, Officer DiMartini posed as the 14-year-old female child and engaged in communications with an individual later identified as Mohammed Merchant. Merchant told the 14-year-old he wanted to have sex with the juvenile and would meet the juvenile at a location that evening. Upon arrival at the pre-arranged location, Merchant was taken into custody and told police he was going to have sex with the 14-year-old female child. Merchant was charged with attempt to commit statutory sexual assault and related offenses. He was arraigned before Magisterial District Judge Michael A. Burns and bail was set at $150,000 cash. The preliminary hearing is scheduled for May 8, 2019 before Magisterial District Judge Burns. Assistant District Attorney Christopher Boggs is prosecuting the case on behalf of the Commonwealth.


sylvia_gregoryGregory Mark Sylvia, 32, of the 600 block of Lowell Street in Peabody, Massachusetts, was arrested following an investigation by Corporal John Sours of the Pennsylvania State Police and member of the ICAC Task Force. Corporal Sours posed as a 15-year-old juvenile male on a social media application. During the exchanges, Sylvia sent nude photos and advised he wanted to perform sexual acts on the juvenile. A meeting was arranged and upon his arrival at the agreed upon location, Sylvia was taken into custody. Gregory Sylvia was charged with attempt to commit involuntary sexual intercourse and related offenses. He was arraigned on April 5, 2019 before Magisterial District Judge Jack D. Lippart, and bail was set at $100,000/10%. The preliminary hearing is scheduled for May 13, 2019 before Magisterial District Judge Lippart. Assistant District Attorney Christopher Boggs is prosecuting the case on behalf of the Commonwealth.

 


Santhosh AkinepalliSanthosh Akinepalli, 27, of the 300 block of Apple Drive in Exton, was arrested following an investigation by Officer Tim Kearney of the Ridley Township Police Department and member of the Delaware County ICAC Task Force. On April 6, 2019, Officer Kearney posed as a 13-year-old female on a social media application, and received a message from an individual later identified as Akinepalli, who asked, “How much for an hour?” while asking the juvenile to engage in sex. Akinepalli said he would drive to the juvenile’s location after acknowledging several times that he knew the juvenile was 13 years old. On April 12, 2019, after engaging in sexual related conversation, Akinepalli arranged to meet the juvenile at a prearranged location and was taken into custody while traveling to the location. Akinepalli was charged with attempt to commit statutory sexual assault and related offenses. Magisterial District Judge Jack D. Lippart set bail at $50,000/10%. The preliminary hearing is scheduled for May 13, 2019, before Magisterial District Judge Lippart. Assistant District Attorney Diane Horn is prosecuting the case on behalf of the Commonwealth.


Anthony QuairoliAnthony Quairoli, 22, of the 400 block of Corinthian Avenue in Essington, was arrested following an investigation by Officer Tim Kearney of the Ridley Township Police Department and member of the Delaware County ICAC Task Force. Office Kearney posed as a 13-year-old female and was asked by Quairoli through a social media application to hang out, and whether the juvenile wanted to have sex with him. After Quairoli was told that the juvenile was actually 12-years-old, he said he still wanted to have sex with her and arranged a meeting. At approximately 8:20 pm on April 6, 2019, a meeting was arranged and upon his arrival at the pre-arranged location, Quairoli was taken into custody. Quairoli was charged with attempt to commit rape of a child and related offenses. Anthony Quairoli was arraigned in front of Magisterial District Judge Jack D. Lippart, and bail was set at $100,000/10%. The preliminary hearing is scheduled for May 20, 2019 before Magisterial District Judge Lippart. Assistant District Attorney Alan Borowsky is prosecuting the case on behalf of the Commonwealth.


Michael Dean NormanMichael Dean Norman, 38, of the 1700 block Sweet Pea Avenue in Las Vegas, Nevada, was arrested following an investigation by Corporal John Sours of the Pennsylvania State Police and a member of the ICAC Task Force. On April 5, 2019, Corporal Sours posed as a 15-year-old male on a social networking application and received sexual messages from Norman, including his photograph. Norman told the juvenile that he wanted to perform oral sex on the juvenile. A meeting was arranged and Michael Norman was taken into custody after being observed walking toward the meeting location with the cell phone used to communicate with the juvenile. Norman was charged with attempt to commit involuntary sexual intercourse and related offenses. He was arraigned before Magisterial District Judge Jack D. Lippart, and bail was set at $100,000/10%. Defendant subsequently waived his preliminary hearing. Assistant District Attorney Matthew Catania is prosecuting the case on behalf of the Commonwealth.



Kenneth Albert RuzatKenneth Albert Ruzat, 54, of the 1300 block of Langley Street in Trainer, was arrested following an investigation by Corporal Chris Hill of the Pennsylvania State Police and a member of the ICAC Task Force. Corporal Hill posed on line as a 14-year-old male on a social networking application. Ruzat exchanged several messages with the undercover officer asking to perform sexual acts on the juvenile and asking for nude photographs. A meeting was arranged and on April 6, 2019, and upon his arrival at the pre-arranged location, Ruzat was taken into police custody. Ruzat was charged with attempt to commit involuntary sexual intercourse and related offenses. He was arraigned before Magisterial District Judge Jack D. Lippart, and bail was set at $100,000/10%. The preliminary hearing is scheduled for May 20, 2019 before Magisterial District Judge Lippart. Assistant District Attorney Matthew Catania is prosecuting the case on behalf of the Commonwealth.



Andrew Stephen OatleyAndrew Stephen Oatley, 23, of the 31000 block of Mark Drive in Galena, Maryland, following an investigation by Corporal John Sours of the Pennsylvania State Police and a member of the ICAC Task Force. Corporal Sours posed as an undercover 15-year-old male on a social networking application. On April 5, 2019, Oatley contacted the juvenile asking for nude photographs and sexual requests, including having sexual intercourse with the juvenile, and eventually sent a photo of himself. Oately arranged to meet with the juvenile and on April 5, 2019, upon his arrival in the pre-arranged meeting location, Oately was taken into custody by police. Oately admitted to police that he was in Delaware when he began messaging the juvenile, went home to Maryland, and drove back to the meeting location in Pennsylvania. Oately was charged with attempt to commit involuntary sexual intercourse and related offenses. He was arraigned before Magisterial District Judge Jack D. Lippart, and bail was set at $50,000/10%. The preliminary hearing is scheduled for May 20, 2019 in front of Magisterial District Judge Lippart. Assistant District Attorney Diane Horn is prosecuting the case on behalf of the Commonwealth.


Roberto Flores AscenionRoberto Flores Ascenion, 37, of the 800 block of Kohn Street in Norristown, was arrested following an investigation on April 13, 2019, when Officer Time Kearney of the Ridley Township Police Department and member of the ICAC Task Force posed as an undercover 12-year-old female. Ascenion messaged the juvenile stating, “I would like to meet you and have a good time.” When the undercover officer replied that they were only 12 years old, Ascenion continued to message the juvenile. After several exchanges, Ascenion told the juvenile they were going to have sex and that he wanted the juvenile to “masturbate him.” Ascenion told the juvenile he was thirty minutes away, and he was taken into custody by police after arriving at the agreed-upon location. Ascenion was charged with attempt to commit rape of a child and related offenses. He was arraigned before Magisterial District Judge Vincent D. Gallagher and bail was set at $100,000/10%. The preliminary hearing is scheduled for May 13, 2019 before Magisterial District Judge Gallagher. Assistant District Attorney Danielle Gallaher is prosecuting the case on behalf of the Commonwealth.



Sachin Kumar ShettySachin Kumar Shetty, 28, of the 2500 block of Jean Drive in Hatfield, was arrested following an investigation by Officer Leo Doyle with the Ridley Township Police Department and member of the ICAC Task Force who posed undercover as a 13-year-old female. Shetty messaged the undercover officer on a social media application, asking her age and telling her that he was 25 years old. The conversation resulted in Shetty telling the juvenile he could come to pick her up and they would have sex and he stated, “Im ready to lose my virginity to you.” Later that afternoon on April 6, 2019, Shetty arrived at the pre-arranged meet location and was taken into custody. Shetty told police he was ready to have sexual relations with the 13-year-old female if she was ready. Shettty was charged with attempt to commit statutory sexual assault and related offenses. He was arraigned before Magisterial District Judge Jack D. Lippart and bail was set at $100,000/10%. The defendant waived his preliminary hearing. Assistant District Attorney Danielle Gallaher is prosecuting the case on behalf of the Commonwealth.




“These defendants actively sought out and targeted juveniles, attempting to prey upon our youth, for their own warped sexual gratification. That is the very definition of predatory behavior. Those who engage in this criminal conduct here in Delaware County should be forewarned that our ICAC Task Force is actively working to locate and arrest these perpetrators who further the victimization of children,” said District Attorney Copeland. “This undercover operation is a reminder to parents and community members how important it is to talk with their children, monitor internet use, and report any suspicious activity to our ICAC Task Force. I would like to commend our ICAC Task Force members and its various law enforcement partners for their continued work in locating and apprehending these perpetrators.”

CRIMINAL CHARGES, AND ANY DISCUSSION THEREOF, ARE ALLEGATIONS AND ALL DEFENDANTS ARE PRESUMED INNOCENT UNLESS AND UNTIL PROVEN GUILTY.

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