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OTR driver who lured minors with amusement park tickets & ‘free cross-country trips’ sentenced to life in prison


A long haul truck driver convicted of sexual exploitation of a minor has been sentenced to prison.

On Monday, April 11, 60 year old El Paso resident Travis Wayne Vavra was sentenced to life in prison, according to the U.S. Attorney’s Office Western District of Texas.

In June 2021, a federal jury found Vavra guilty of one count of transportation of minors with intent to engage in criminal sexual activity and one count of possession of a visual depiction involving the sexual exploitation of a minor.

Vavra has been in federal custody since his arrest in December 2019.

Authorities say that Vavra was “a long-haul truck driver who advertised free amusement park passes and cross-country trips for boys to explore the United States. As a result of the advertisement, Vavra transported a minor in his tractor trailer from the El Paso, Texas area to different states, including New Mexico, Missouri, Arizona, California, Wisconsin, Illinois, Nebraska, Maryland, Oklahoma, and Louisiana from May 2015 to June 2019.  Vavra sexually assaulted the minor during these cross-country trips that began when the victim was nine years old.  Vavra had also previously molested two other victims. On the date of his arrest, Vavra posted another flyer for parents and boys advertising these free cross-country trips. Vavra was found to be in possession of child sexual abuse material on his phone at the time of his arrest.”

The FBI spearheaded the investigation, which initially centered on a suspicious flier posted in the El Paso area.

“From suspicious flyers posted in store windows to reports of sexual abuse, the investigation involving Vavra showed how concerned citizens came together to stop a predator from destroying the innocence of additional young boys and assist in providing closure to the victims of his previous sexual assaults,” said Jeffrey R. Downey, FBI El Paso Special Agent in Charge. “We cannot protect our community alone. The FBI is thankful to those citizens who came forward to voice their suspicions. The FBI along with our partners assigned to the El Paso Crimes Against Children and Human Trafficking task force remain committed to the most vulnerable members of El Paso, the children.”


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