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Oliver Sohngen, a well-known music teacher and founder of the Long Island City Academy of Music in Queens, has pleaded guilty to federal sex trafficking charges, according to the New York Daily News.
He admitting to using a pimp to attempt to buy sex from girls as young as 8.
The 53-year-old pleaded guilty to the charges Thursday in federal court in Manhattan, court records show. He is scheduled to be sentenced on Nov. 27. He was arrested on May 16 after authorities found a series of incriminating text messages on the phone of a Bronx-based pimp.
Sohngen is a married father of two, including an 8-year-old daughter. He is accused of having sexual contact with two girls, ages 15 and 17, and prosecutors said he tried to buy sex from three other girls, ages 8, 11 and 13.
He was convicted of conspiracy to commit sex trafficking, among other charges, and faces life in prison.
From March through November 2013, Sohngen used three different aliases in text exchanges with a pimp to buy sex from children, authorities in the joint federal-NYPD investigation said. The pimp took lewd pictures of the girls and posted them on Backpage.com, court records show.
Police say that on Oct. 18, 2013, Sohngen agreed to pay $800 to a pimp to perform sex acts with an 8-year-old and then accepted an offer made by the pimp to provide him access to an 8-year-old and a 13-year-old for $1,600.
The pimp told Sohngen to drop the kids off at a Chuck E. Cheese restaurant when he was done with them, because that was where their parents thought they were going. However, the pimp never followed through on the deal.
The pimp turned on Sohngen, although it’s unclear what led investigators to the pimp. They set up a sting in which Sohngen thought he was corresponding with a 15-year-old, but it was actually an undercover officer.
When he tried to set up a meeting with the supposed 15-year-old to engage in sexual activity and told her they would agree that she was 18, he was arrested.