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Published: Wednesday, October 07, 2015 @ 7:22 PM
Updated: Thursday, October 08, 2015 @ 6:16 PM
CLEARCREEK TWP. — UPDATE @ 4:30 p.m. (Oct. 8): Nicholas Kurtz pleaded not guilty to charges accusing the Warren County man of coercion and enticement in demanding underage females in several states to become his sex slaves.
He was told in his initial appearance before a U.S. magistrate in Cincinnati that he could be sentenced to 30 years to life in prison if he is convicted as charged. Kurtz was remanded to jail.
Clearcreek Twp. Police Chief John Terrill said his department’s original investigation identified as many as 50 potential victims in the United States and abroad. Terrill said he knows this because his department’s investigators spent hours looking through a computer taken from Kurtz’s residence during a search in January.
The case was narrowed to a handful of alleged underage victims, the chief said, based on the best evidence immediately available.
Terrill said that unfortunately, Kurtz’s approach was somewhat common.
“The way they manipulate young kids — they lie to them. Anything they can do to get compliance to satisfy themselves,” the chief said.
Kurtz is accused of threatening to hurt himself if the girls didn’t do what he asked them to do.
A Warren County man is to be in federal court Thursday on charges accusing him of coercing and enticing juvenile girls in several states into becoming his sex slaves.
Nicholas Kurtz, 21, was indicted Wednesday on charges accusing him of knowingly persuading, inducing, enticing and coercing girls ranging in age from 17 to 14 to engage in sexual activity. He remains in the Butler County Jail on a federal hold for the U.S. Marshals Service.
FBI investigators said they have evidence from several alleged victims, one of whom is a Wisconsin girl, who said Kurtz claimed he was 17 when they began talking a year ago.
She was 13 and Kurtz would have been 20, according to an affidavit filed by FBI Special Agent Andrea Kinzig.
According to the affidavit, he sent her “a list of 100 rules of a slave and videos of how slaves act, and he told her to memorize the rules.”
Over the course of two months, according to the affidavit, Kurtz told her to send him nude photos, engage in sex acts via video and mutilate her genitals with a safety pin.
Kinzig, in the affidavit, said investigators found several other girls Kurtz asked for nude photos — a 16-year-old from New York, a 14-year-old from Virginia, a 17-year-old from Michigan, and 17-year-old from Maryland.
In some cases, Kurtz threatened to harm himself or the girls if they didn’t do what he asked them to do, Kinzig said in the document.
According to the affidavit, Kurtz communicated with the girls via Kik, an instant-messaging application for smartphones, social networking site Ask.fm, and Skype, a video chat app.
The indictment indicates the activity occurred between Sept. 1, 2013 and Jan. 21, 2015.
In January, Clearcreek Twp. police searched the Kurtz residence and seized computers, cell phones and other electronic equipment as part of the investigation into suspected child sexual abuse.