A Massachusetts Institute of Technology researcher facing federal charges of traveling to Colorado to have sex with a mother and her two children has apparently killed himself in prison
, officials said on Monday.
Yaron Segal, 30, an Israeli citizen, died Friday, said John Sell, executive assistant with the Federal Correctional Institution Englewood.
Guards found Segal alone, hanging from a homemade noose
in his cell at the detention center, where defendants are held while awaiting trial, Sell said. The federal jail is a separate facility next to a minimum-security prison where former Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich began serving his 14-year corruption sentence last month.
Segal's death is being investigated by the FBI. He was being held without bail on two charges of traveling to engage in sex with minors, and a charge of using the mail to persuade, induce, entice and coerce a minor to have sex.
Agents first became interested in Segal in early February when he was seen in chat rooms where titles including ‘childslavesex’ and ‘ChildRapeTortureBrutality’ were being used.
DHS agent Vanessa Hipps went undercover, posing as a mother of two girls aged 12 and 16.
Hipps chatted with Segal, who quickly turned the conversation to sex. He told her he wanted to have intercourse with her and both of her children, adding that he would be willing to make the 1,800-mile trip to meet them. ‘I could definitely drop by for a weekend,’
Over the next few weeks Segal messaged Hipps on the chat room, as well as by email, text and Yahoo Chat.
He repeated his desire to have sex with Hipps’ daughters and sent raunchy photos and videos of himself.
‘A majority of the chats were very sexually explicit,’ Hipps said.
In one email sent in February, Segal included a link to a website selling sex toys he wanted to buy for their upcoming lewd encounter.
He told her during a phone call that he would take ‘a dildo, small vibrator for the youngest child’.
On March 16 he sent another email with photographs of the vibrators he had bought. ‘Got the toys,' he wrote, 'those are some big c**ks’.
Yale-educated Segal worked as a postdoctoral assistant in MIT's Photovoltaics Research Laboratory, which develops solar energy cells, according to a letter sent to U.S. District Court.