Staplehurst man's arraignment for sex trafficking charges set for later this month


Bail for a Staplehurst man accused of sending sexually explicit messages to a minor has been set at $500,000.

Matthew French, 35, was charged in Butler County court on Sept. 9 with sex trafficking of a minor, attempted creation/distribution of visual depiction of sexually explicit conduct and child abuse without bodily injury, all felonies.

The charges stem from an investigation that showed between May 17 and 19 of this year, French sent emails to a 16-year-old boy asking sexually explicit questions and attemptd eto receive nude photos in exchange for money.

French waived his preliminary hearing and his bond was set at $500,000. His arraignment is scheduled for Sept. 21.

According to an affidavit, filed in Butler County, the investigation began on May 17 when Butler County Sheriff's Sergeant Zachary Pilcher was called a local school for concerns of an email sent to a student that had been flagged by the school's security software.

A follow-up investigation and search warrant of French's property led authorities to believe French was attempting to receive nude photos in exchange for money.


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