A 52-year-old resident of the United Kingdom was arrested on suspicion of sexual exploitation of a minor Monday after paying $500 to have sex with a 9-year-old girl and showing up at a Mesa hotel with a pink dress, Viagra and teddy bears.
Robin Sprigg was arrested after an informant told authorities about Sprigg's desire to have sex with a child between 5- and 7-years-old and detectives set up a sting operation, said Mesa police spokesman officer Mark Reyes.
Mesa Justice of the Peace Pro Tem Caryl Parker set Sprigg's bail at $500,000 Tuesday morning and scheduled his preliminary hearing April 24.
After the informant contacted police, Reyes said an undercover officer called Sprigg and confirmed he wanted to pay to have sex with a child. During a subsequent meeting with the officer, Sprigg agreed to pay $500 for three hours with a 9-year-old, during which time he said he would perform sex acts with her and photograph her.
According to court documents, the officer gave Sprigg a hotel room key, Viagra and other sexual aids upon receiving $500 from him during a second meeting.
Detectives arrested Sprigg after he crossed the road to the hotel carrying the dress, teddy bears and a pink T-shirt.
Sprigg, who has been in the United States three weeks, told detectives after his arrest that he had planned to return to the United Kingdom today.
Because Sprigg told the informant he had had sexual encounters with children in Las Vegas and San Francisco prior to his arrival in Mesa, Reyes said there is a chance of the existence of real victims.
Lt. Jeff Carlson of the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department, and Inspector Perry Morris of the San Francisco Police Department, said they have not yet received any reports.