Beverly Hills Therapist Accused of Trying to Meet 13-Year-Old for Sex

Photo Illustration by Luis Rendon/The Daily Beast
Photo Illustration by Luis Rendon/The Daily Beast

A $750-per-session Beverly Hills psychologist who claims to cater to Hollywood elites, pro athletes, and “millionaire and billionaire” business executives, is accused of driving nearly 200 miles up the coast to have sex with a 13-year-old girl he met online.

But when the teen turned out to be an undercover cop, Ron Gad found himself in handcuffs.

That’s according to a federal affidavit obtained by The Daily Beast, which says Gad, a 49-year-old married father of two, unwittingly walked into a sting operation while chatting with a decoy from the San Luis Obispo County Sheriff’s Office (SLOCSO). After his arrest, Gad tried to talk his way out of trouble, insisting that because he “did not bring condoms or panties or make a hotel reservation,” he “therefore did not do anything illegal,” the affidavit states.

A subsequent search of Gad’s digital devices allegedly turned up “numerous files of CSAM, including files depicting real children known to law enforcement,” and apparently preemptive—but ultimately unsuccessful—online searches for “Catchung [sic] underage predatorsin [sic] san luis obispo,” “Underage sex sting in san luis obispo,” “Child sex sting in san luis obispo,” and “Catch predator in san luis obispo.”

Reached by phone on Wednesday, Gad told The Daily Beast that the whole thing was simply a misunderstanding.

“She told me she was 19,” he said. “Anything more than that, you’d have to speak with my attorney.”

In an email, Gad’s attorney, Mark Werksman, said, “Dr. Gad denies the allegations in the complaint and will defend himself against them in court. He was the target of a sting in which an undercover sheriff’s deputy lured him into a conversation about sexual fantasies. Dr. Gad at all times believed the person he was communicating with and sought to meet was a grown-up woman who was engaged in sexual role-playing. Dr. Gad would not agree to meet her until she confirmed that she was a grown-up, a fact the government acknowledges in its criminal complaint.”

“After more than a decade in this field, my client base has grown to include some of the most renowned actors and producers in Hollywood, the most acclaimed professional athletes (LA Lakers, LA Dodgers, and US Olympians), and the world’s most successful business- men and women (including millionaire and billionaire founders and C-Suite executives),” Gad’s professional bio reads. “These clients travel the world and are often based in various cities around the country and the world. Sadly, the restrictions imposed on my licenses to practice traditional psychotherapy outside the states in which I was licensed, in part, lead [sic] me to voluntarily relinquish my license to begin my practice as a ‘Psychology-Based Life, Love, and Professional Performance Coach.’”

Gad’s bio goes on to tell prospective patients that he has “thousands of hours of experience and training in the Ketamine Assisted Psychotherapy space along with training and certification by the US-sanctioned Multidisciplinary Association of Psychedelic Studies (MAPS) and others in the use of MDMA and psilocybin in psychotherapy.”

The investigation into Gad’s alleged criminal activity began on Sept. 20, 2022, according to the affidavit. It says a SLOCSO detective posing as a teenager named “Emma” on Chat Avenue soon received a message from someone identifying himself as “D.D.,” asking if she was “interested in older men.” D.D. wanted to take the conversation offline, and requested that Emma text him a picture of herself. The detective sent D.D. a photo of herself that was processed through a face-altering app to make her appear younger, and D.D. sent one showing him sitting on a cream-colored couch, with a metal sculpture of Charlie Chaplin atop a tricycle visible in the background, the affidavit states.

Investigators almost immediately identified D.D. as Gad, matching the picture he texted to pictures of Gad on “several publicly available websites advertising his business, Beverly Hills Therapy Group,” according to the affidavit. On one,, Gad can be seen in an office with the name “Dr. Ron N Gad” on the door, the affidavit goes on.

“To the right of the door, a cream-colored couch is seen and a metal Charlie Chaplin sculpture on a three-wheel bicycle is displayed behind the couch on a shelf,” it states.

From there, the undercover SLOCSO detective spent the next several weeks exchanging “explicit” texts with Gad, who continued to believe he was chatting with a 13-year-old, according to the affidavit.

“Gad… told the [detective] that she had to be his ‘little secret,’ that he was ‘craving’ her,” and told her to “call him ‘daddy,’” the affidavit continues. The undercover officer asked Gad if he was OK with her being so young, it says.

“Yup,” Gad allegedly replied.

In the messages, Gad, who was now calling himself “Holden Caulfield”—the name of the main character in the novel The Catcher in the Rye—sent “Emma” dick pics alongside professions of his lust for her, according to the affidavit.

“I really want you Emma,” he said in one, the affidavit states, adding that Gad asked Emma to ditch school to meet with him. Gad promised to take her to a hotel, where they could have sex, telling her, “BTW, I’m so into you.”

The undercover detective reiterated that she was 13, and told Gad her birthday was coming up the following month.

“Fuck,” Gad responded, according to the affidavit. “You’re hot.”

On a subsequent phone call, Gad said he would be coming to see Emma in late October 2022, admitting that he was “nervous because of the consequences if they got caught, and said he was paranoid because he had heard of fake texts, calls, and police traps,” the affidavit says.

Gad asked Emma for additional pictures of herself so he could be more comfortable knowing she was a real person, and requesting she video chat with him, the affidavit states. When the undercover detective, as Emma, said she wasn’t comfortable with a video call, Gad said she “did not really love him if she did not want to do things that made him happy or more comfortable.”

At the same time, cops say Gad told Emma he would bring condoms when he picked her up, reminding Emma to delete their messages every night. The undercover detective “ended the call by saying her mother was home and she had to get off the phone,” according to the affidavit. “Gad said he couldn’t wait until Monday, and he loved her.”

A snippet from the criminal complaint charging Ron Gad with knowingly receiving or distributing child sexual abuse material.
U.S. District Court for the Central District of California

At about 3 p.m. on Oct. 24, 2022, teams of undercover officers in San Luis Obispo watched Gad circle Laguna Park, the meeting spot he had arranged with Emma, in a 2019 Audi SUV, the affidavit states. On his way there, Gad texted Emma over the course of two hours, sending what the affidavit calls “false exculpatory statements.”

“I just want to confirm that you’re really a 19yo junior at the university like you told me when we first met in the chatroom,” Gad had written, the affidavit says. “Because, while I love this RP [role play], I can’t come see someone who’s really under age.”

According to the affidavit, the undercover detective replied, “umm I am not 19 and I do not go to a university. I really thought u were coming to see me.”

It says Gad continued to badger “Emma” to tell him she was at least 18, until she finally gave in and said, “yes i am 18 daddy... r u good now? im in class. see u afterschool.”

“At no point during the Chat Avenue conversation, the text messages, or the phone calls between GAD and the [undercover detective] did the [detective] claim to be 19 years old,” the affidavit states. “Nor did Gad ever state that he believed the [detective] was an adult or that they were role playing. On the contrary, Gad’s statements and actions throughout the relationship with the [undercover detective] demonstrate that he believed the [detective] was a 13-year-old girl.”

Once at the park, Gad would pull his vehicle over to the curb, pause briefly, then make another loop around the area, according to the affidavit. “Gad appeared to be attempting counter-surveillance measures to detect law enforcement presence,” it says. “Eventually, SLOSO deputies in a marked car conducted a traffic stop of Gad’s vehicle and arrested Gad.”

Under questioning, Gad insisted to detectives that the whole thing was a “fantasy,” and that he actually expected to be meeting an adult at the park, according to the affidavit. Gad claimed “Emma” had told him she was a 19-year-old college student, but that she “had agreed to role play as a 13-year-old,” the affidavit says. (This conversation never occurred, according to the affidavit.)

“Gad said he was not going to do anything illegal, and he did not bring the condoms or the panties that he told the [undercover detective] he would bring, and he did not make a hotel reservation,” the affidavit says. “... After the interview, Gad was arrested and booked into the jail at SLOCSO.”

A search of Gad’s digital devices, which were seized at the time of his arrest, turned up “child pornography, as well as communications with suspected minors, and internet searches related to sex with minors,” the affidavit states, noting that Gad had bookmarked websites such as,, and

Gad was charged by California authorities in April 2023 with possession of child sexual abuse material. On Tuesday, he was served with a federal summons on a charge of knowingly receiving or distributing child pornography, which carries up to 20 years in prison. He is scheduled to appear in Los Angeles federal court on Wednesday at 1 p.m.

Read more at The Daily Beast.

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