Dover man sentenced to 11 years for sex trafficking a minor

Jan. 24—A Dover man has been sentenced to 11 years in federal prison for sex trafficking a minor back in 2017.

Tyler Townsend, 28, posted online ads offering a minor female for "commercial sex acts" on a now-defunct website, according to a news release from the U.S. Attorney's office, which prosecuted the case.

"Preying on our community's most vulnerable members — our children — is a horrific crime that we will not tolerate," said U.S. Attorney Jane Young.

Young said her office is committed to "stopping the sexual exploitation of children and pursuing justice on behalf of victims."

Investigators tracked the online account used to post the ads to Townsend through phone and email record, officials said. Townsend often dealt directly with individuals who responded to the ads, negotiating terms and discussing prices, and he also frequently accompanied the girl and collected the money, according to the news release.

The case was investigated by Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) in collaboration with the N.H. Human Trafficking Collaborative Task Force, N.H. Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force and the Manchester and Dover police departments.

"Townsend trafficked a minor, turning a profit on the exploitation of a young life," said Matthew Millhollin, special agent in charge for New England at HSI. "He orchestrated meetings with strangers for commercial sex, placing her in incredibly dangerous situations for his own monetary enrichment without concern for her welfare."