Monday, March 22, 2010 | 11:14 a.m.
A 52-year-old Las Vegas man who posted an advertisement on Craigslist.org seeking a sexual encounter with a young boy received a 10-year prison sentence Friday for coercion and enticement of a minor.
Thomas Comans III, who was sentenced by U.S. District Judge Roger Hunt, also will be under lifetime supervision upon his release from prison. Comans, part-owner of Cool Water Pools, was indicted in October 2007 and convicted by a federal jury last December.
In October 2007, a law enforcement agent working undercover for the Michigan Attorney General’s High Technology Crime Unit contacted Metro Police to report that he had information regarding a person living in Las Vegas who was believed to be seeking sex with juveniles via the Internet. The person was identified as Comans.
Later that month, Comans had placed an obscene and graphic advertisement in the “men seeking men” personals sections of Craigslist.org indicating that he wanted to experience sex with a young boy. The undercover agent responded to the advertisement stating that he was a 13-year-old boy from Michigan who was staying with his mother at a hotel on the Las Vegas Strip.
Several e-mail conversations transpired before an undercover Metro detective began communicating with Comans via Yahoo instant messaging. The undercover detective and Comans engaged in many graphic and sexually explicit conversations, and Comans ultimately arranged to meet with the boy on Oct. 10, 2007, at an arcade in the hotel where the boy said he was staying.
Comans went to the arcade on the pre-arranged meeting date and time, and was arrested by Metro detectives. Comans was searched subsequent to arrest, and law enforcement officers recovered a handwritten note that contained information and directions about the meeting location. Comans was also in possession of male sexual performance-enhancing pills, which were concealed inside a folded piece of paper.
The case was investigated by the FBI and Metro Police as part of the Innocent Images and Internet Crimes Against Children Task Forces. It was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Nancy Koppe and Kishan Nair.
The case was brought as part of Project Safe Childhood, a nationwide initiative to combat the growing epidemic of child sexual exploitation and abuse launched by the Justice Department.