A man was arrested after allegedly engaging in online sexual communication with a minor and arranging to meet the minor for sexual purposes.
In early September 2021, the Seal Beach Police Department received information about an adult male who reportedly engaged in sexually explicit online communications with a person believed to be a 14-year-old child. The man also reportedly arranged to meet with the minor at a local shopping mall the same day.
As a member of the Internet Crimes Against Children taskforce, Seal Beach Police Department Detectives and the Police Civilian Investigator, quickly began an investigation and worked to identify and locate the suspect. The suspect was identified as Armando Poeta, 46, of Torrance. A search warrant was served on the suspect’s residence.
On Saturday, Sept. 25, Poeta was arrested by Seal Beach Police Department on suspicion of one misdemeanor count of California Penal Code Section 288.3 – Online Sexual Communications with a minor and one felony count of California Penal Code Section 288.4 – Arranging to Meet a Minor for Sexual Purposes. He was later booked at the Orange County Jail.
Based on Poeta’s dual citizenship and extensive travel history throughout the United States and abroad, investigators believe there may be more victims, both reported and unreported. This investigation is ongoing; therefore, police are asking anyone with additional information or who believes they may be a victim to contact Detective Balderrama at (562) 799-4100 ext. 1109 or firstname.lastname@example.org.