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School Bus Driver Accused Of Sexually Soliciting 13-Year-Old Passenger

Federal Courthouse in New Haven.
Federal Courthouse in New Haven. Photo Credit: U.S. Federal Courthouses

A school bus driver has been arrested on a federal complaint for sexually soliciting a 13-year-old passenger on his bus, according to the U.S Attorney's Office.

Jose Manuel Santos, 36, was arrested Friday and charged with transfer of obscene materials to a minor, and enticement of a minor to engage in illegal sexual activity, said John H. Durham, U.S. Attorney for the District of Connecticut, and Peter C. Fitzhugh, Special Agent in Charge of Homeland Security Investigations in Boston.

According to ICE officials, law enforcement received information that Santos, a school bus/van driver in Bridgeport, was sexually soliciting a 13-year-old girl who was a passenger on his route, said John Mohan, public affairs spokesman for ICE.

An analysis of the victim's cell phone revealed a sexually explicit photo of Santos that Santos sent to the minor victim, and text messages from Santos, including a text message asking the minor victim to send him a sexually explicit photo of her, officials said

The victim told investigators Santos gave her a business card with his cell phone number on it and told her to text him, the affidavit said.

After receiving the explicit message, the victim told school officials on Monday, Oct. 29, about the text messages with Santos, according to the affidavit.

To protect the victim's identity, investigators redacted what school she attends and the bus route.

Santos faces up to 20 years in prison under the charges, the U.S. Attorney said.

He has been remanded into custody until his next court hearing.

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