JACKSONVILLE, Fla. — A Northeast Florida Interagency Child Exploitation and Persons Trafficking Task Force, or NEFL INTERCEPT, investigation led to the life sentence of a Florida man for attempted online enticement of a minor to engage in sexual activity.
Wayne Joseph Cavins, 64, of Deltona, Florida, was also ordered to serve a life term of supervised release and to register as a sex offender. He had pleaded guilty on Nov. 15, 2022.
“This predator fed his perverse fantasies by sexually abusing a child for years, enticing another minor victim, as well as producing and collecting sexually explicit content of children,” said Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) Assistant Special Agent in Charge K. Jim Phillips. “This well-deserved life sentence stands as proof that through law enforcement partnerships with St. Johns County and Clay County Sheriff’s Offices, and all partner agencies on the Northeast Florida INTERCEPT Task Force, law enforcement in northeast Florida will stop at nothing to stop the victimization of our children by these dangerous predators.”
According to court documents, from Dec. 23, 2020, through Jan. 29, 2021, Cavins attempted to persuade, induce, entice and coerce a child to engage in sexual activity. Cavins met the child on a social media application and later communicated with the child via text messages. During their text messages, Cavins detailed his interest in engaging in sexual activity with the child, including specifying possible hotel locations for them to meet. In addition, Cavins persuaded child to produce child sex abuse materials on several occasions that depicted specific content.
After his arrest, Cavins admitted to talking to the child and that he knew it was wrong. A search of his devices showed Cavins possessed multiple images of child sex abuse materials, including images of the minor child. Further investigation revealed Cavins physically and sexually abused another minor to whom he had access for several years.
“Operation Light Shine acknowledges the unwavering commitment, professionalism and dedication displayed by the partners of the Northeast Florida INTERCEPT task force, whose remarkable teamwork has brought justice for the victims and their families,” according to an official spokesperson with Operation Light Shine.
The St. Johns County Sheriff’s Office, Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) and the Northeast Florida INTERCEPT Task Force investigated this case. The United States Attorney’s Office also extends a special thank you to the Clay County Sheriff’s Office for their assistance during the sentencing hearing. Assistant U.S. Attorney Ashley Washington prosecuted this case while Chief U.S. District Judge Timothy J. Corrigan presided over the case.
The case was brought as part of Project Safe Childhood, a nationwide Department of Justice initiative launched in May 2006 to combat the growing epidemic of child sexual exploitation and abuse. Led by the U.S. Attorneys’ Offices and the Criminal Division’s Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section, the project marshals federal, state and local resources to identify and rescue victims and locate, apprehend and prosecute individuals who sexually exploit children.
HSI is the principal investigative arm of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS), responsible for investigating transnational crime and threats, specifically those criminal organizations that exploit the global infrastructure through which international trade, travel, and finance move. HSI’s workforce of more than 8,700 employees consists of more than 6,000 special agents assigned to 237 cities throughout the United States, and 93 overseas locations in 56 countries. HSI’s international presence represents DHS’s largest investigative law enforcement presence abroad and one of the largest international footprints in U.S. law enforcement.