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Man charged with attempting to lure child into prostitution

A 55-year-old Las Vegas man has been charged with attempting to lure a child into prostitution after a youth secretly recorded him talking to her about making money in exchange for sex, according to police and court records.

Jose Banales-Gonzalez was booked into the Clark County Detention Center Sept. 28 on charges of sex trafficking a child under 18 and attempted kidnapping of a minor. Las Vegas police wrote in an arrest report for Banales-Gonzalez that a woman called police on Sept. 13 to report he was trying to get her daughter “involved in prostitution.” The age of the child was blacked out by police in the document.

Police said the child subsequently told them that Banales-Gonzalez had repeatedly met with her and talked about “being an ‘escort’ and making money having sex with men,” police wrote in the report. “Jose told (her) he could help her with this and encouraged (her) to leave her parents.”

Police said the youth decided to record Banales-Gonzalez’s comments because “she didn’t think anyone would believe her.” Detectives said they listened to the child’s audio recordings and they affirmed the youth’s account.

“She could make as much as $20,000,” police quoted Banales-Gonzalez as saying to the girl. “Jose explains, girls he knows keep about $15,000 and the guy protecting them keeps about $5,000.”

Police said Banales-Gonzalez told the youth “think about making $50,000 a day” and “you’re always going to have nice clothes and good cars. Your life is going to be nice and easy.”

Detectives with the Las Vegas Valley Child Exploitation Task Force arrested Banales-Gonzalez Sept. 28. Upon questioning, he acknowledged talking to the youth about sex and offering her assistance in “escorting.”

Las Vegas Justice Court records show a preliminary hearing in the case is scheduled for Nov. 1. The Clark County public defender’s office has been appointed to represent Banales-Gonzalez. He remained in custody as of Wednesday.

Contact Glenn Puit by email at gpuit@reviewjournal.com. Follow @GlennatRJ on Twitter.

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