FLORIDA – A Florida man has been sentenced for attempting to purchase commercial sex with minors, the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of Florida (USAO) has announced.
Ralph Kevin Tovar, 31, of Hollywood, has been sentenced to 15 years in prison for attempted sex trafficking of a minor and attempted enticement and coercion of a minor to engage in sexual activity, the USAO said.
According to trial evidence, between January and May 2022, Tovar engaged in negotiations with undercover officers to purchase sex with purported minors who were being advertised for commercial sex. On May 6, 2022, Tovar reportedly met with an undercover officer and paid the agreed-upon price to engage in sexual activity with a 13-year-old girl and a 15-year-old girl.
Following Tovar’s arrest, agents searched his cellphone and said they found he had been attempting to purchase sex with minors since January 2022.
A Miami jury convicted Tovar, a Department of Veterans Affairs Medical Center employee, of two counts of attempted sex trafficking of a minor and one count of attempted enticement and coercion of a minor to engage in sexual activity.
U.S. Attorney Markenzy Lapointe for the Southern District of Florida and acting Special Agent in Charge Michael E. Buckley, Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) Miami, made the announcement.
HSI Miami investigated the case with the assistance of the Broward Sheriff’s Office and the Miami-Dade Police Department. Assistant U.S. Attorneys Arielle Klepach and Eduardo Gardea, Jr. prosecuted it.
Related court documents and information may be found on the website of the District Court for the Southern District of Florida at www.flsd.uscourts.gov or at http://pacer.flsd.uscourts.gov, under case number 22-cr-20205.