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Ventura man charged with producing child sexual abuse material – edhat

Convicted sex offender charged with allegedly producing child sexual abuse material and luring two minors into sex work

A Ventura County man was indicted today by a federal grand jury on 11 counts, accusing him of producing child sexual abuse material and using online chat programs to lure two minors into prostitution months after his release from state prison following a child sex crimes conviction.

Kai Whitney Sommers, 36, of Ventura, is charged with two counts of sex trafficking of a minor, two counts of using a facility of interstate commerce to entice a minor to engage in criminal sex acts, one count of production of child pornography, three counts of distribution of child pornography, one count of possession of child pornography and two counts of committing a crime against a minor while required to register as a sex offender.

Sommers has been in federal custody since June 26 and is scheduled to be arraigned on July 15 in U.S. District Court in downtown Los Angeles.

According to the indictment and a criminal complaint previously filed in the case, Sommers was convicted in September 2021 in Los Angeles Superior Court of rape of a minor and lewd or lascivious acts with a minor for luring a minor in an online chat room to earn money as a sex worker. Sommers then lured the victim to meet and sexually abused her.

In August 2023, months after his release from state prison for the previous conviction, officers searched Sommers’ apartment and allegedly found CSAM there. After the search, officers allegedly discovered that Sommers had been chatting online with two minors in an attempt to persuade them to earn money as sex workers.

One of the victims allegedly produced CSAM for Sommers, who used their images online to promote them as 18-year-old sex workers. Sommers allegedly posed as the victims while communicating with potential adult clients and told the victims that they had to say “18” when the clients asked about their age. Sommers allegedly coerced one victim into meeting and having sex with adult men on two occasions, for a total of approximately $160.

An indictment and a complaint contain allegations that a defendant committed a crime. Every defendant is presumed innocent until proven guilty in a court of law.

If convicted, Sommers would face a mandatory minimum sentence of 25 years in federal prison and a statutory maximum sentence of life in prison.

The FBI and Ventura Police are investigating this case.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Derek R. Flores of the Violent Crimes and Organized Crime Section is prosecuting this case.