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With the help of a petite East Hartford detective, state police said they set up a sting on a businessman who was seeking a young girl for “slave training” in his private dungeon.

Simon Hessler, 46, owner of the Baymont by Wyndham hotel in Manchester and another business in Vernon, is charged with attempting to set up two days of “limitless sex” with a person he thought was a 10- to 12-year-old girl, but was actually the creation of a state police detective posing as a pimp and human trafficker, according to an arrest warrant released Wednesday. Facing charges that include attempted trafficking in persons, Hessler was being held on bail of $1 million after his appearance at Superior Court in Manchester. He is due back in court on Dec. 12.

The article goes on to state the following:

Hessler’s name surfaced in October during state police Det. Samantha McCord’s ongoing investigation into child prostitution and trafficking, the warrant said. Using the email address, [email protected], Hessler had sought photos of young Mexican girls to set up a “casting couch interview,” the warrant says.

McCord began communicating with Hessler on Oct. 10, mentioning that her online persona and Hessler, who lives in Ellington, shared an interest in young girls, police said. Hessler responded by writing, “Show what you speak of and price,” the warrant says. McCord sent him a photo of a female law enforcement officer taken when she was under age 16, the warrant says. Hessler complained that the girl was too old, police said.

The conversations continued and Hessler revealed that he had a dungeon for slave training, attaching photos of what McCord described as “an elaborate sado-masochism room with multiple beds with whips and chains and handfuffs on the wall.” One photo showed a heavy metal cage with a padlock. Police said they later found that Hessler’s dungeon was located in the Vernon business he owns, New England Hospitality Management, Inc., 615 Talcotville Road. A search warrant was served there on Wednesday, police said.

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