TYLER, Texas (KETK) – Four East Texas men from Tyler, Whitehouse and Flint were arrested this week for allegedly attempting to solicit sex from what they thought were underage girls, but were actually undercover agents with the attorney general’s office.
According to their affidavits, the men messaged what they thought was a 17-year-old girl named “Sarah” on a website “for offenders soliciting minors for commercial sexual acts in exchange for payment in Tyler.”
The account operating under the name “Sarah” was in reality a sergeant with the Office of the Attorney General who was conducting an online investigation.
Under the account, the sergeant messaged the following men who allegedly said they would pay the believed to be underage girl for various sexual acts:
- Jose Hernandez, 37 of Tyler
- Matthew Organ, 44 of Whitehouse
- James Amos, 54 of Flint
- Delano Phelps, 89 of Tyler
According to their affidavits, the men messaged “Sarah” on the website that allegedly advertises commercial sex, and responded to the ad posted by the sergeant to make their requests.
Amos allegedly offered what he believed to be a minor $80 for a “quick visit,” and asked the undercover agent if he could perform specific sexual acts with them. However, when Amos arrived at the agreed location, the affidavit said he was arrested.
According to his affidavit, Phelps agreed to pay “Sarah” $160 for sex twice a week and wanted “a local girl to be my regular.”
When the undercover agent informed Phelps that they were 17-years-old, and didn’t have their license to drive to a meeting location, Phelps allegedly messaged back that “it would be illegal for us to go too far.”
Phelps allegedly continued to negotiate rates in exchange for sexual services and agreed to pick up what he thought was a 17-year-old girl, but was arrested by Texas Attorney General Fugitive Unit personnel when he arrived at the location.
Organ and Hernandez similarly messaged with “Sarah,” according to the affidavit, agreeing to different rates for sexual acts, and meeting at an agreed location before they were subsequently arrested by the attorney general’s office.
Each of the four men were arrested for second-degree felony solicitation of prostitution under 18-years-old, and bonded out either the same or next day after posting a $50,000 bond.