A Los Angeles man has been arrested in Pennsylvania after traveling to that state with the alleged intention of engaging in sexual conduct with an underage girl, federal prosecutors announced Monday.
Stephen Chang, 27, was booked on three counts after being taken into custody Saturday at Harrisburg International Airport, according to a statement released by the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Middle District of Pennsylvania.
Chang allegedly began having conversations with a then-13-year-old girl in August 2014, during which he enticed her to “produce and send sexual exploitative images,” and continued to do so until the day of his arrest, the news release said.
He traveled from Los Angeles to Elizabethtown, Pennsylvania, in December of that year, October 2015 and this month “to engage in sexual conduct with the minor,” prosecutors said.
In January, the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children’s CyberTipline notified police about Facebook correspondence between the young girl, a resident of Elizabethtown, and a man in California. The man was later identified as Chang, according to the news release.
The suspect appeared at a preliminary hearing on Monday, during which U.S. Magistrate Judge Susan E. Schwab found probable cause to conclude the he traveled to Pennsylvania to engage in the criminal sexual conduct, the statement said.
Chang was ordered temporarily detained pending a detention hearing on March 10.
The arrest stemmed from a multi-agency investigation conducted by the FBI; Lancaster and Dauphin counties district attorney’s offices; and the Elizabethtown, Northwest Regional and Harrisburg International Airport police departments.
Anyone with information about the case, or who believes they may know a victim, was encouraged to call the FBI at 717-232-8686.