California Men Sentenced to Prison for Transporting Minor Girls from California to Nevada to Work as Prostitutes
|U.S. Attorney’s Office April 30, 2014|
LAS VEGAS, NV—Two men were sentenced to prison today for transporting minor girls from the Northern California area to Las Vegas, Nevada in 2013 to work as prostitutes, announced Daniel G. Bogden, United States Attorney for the District of Nevada.
In separate unrelated cases, Andrew West, 27, of Hayward, California, was sentenced by U.S. District Judge James C. Mahan to eight years in prison and 20 years of supervised release. West pleaded guilty in January to one count of transportation of a minor for prostitution. Ray Darnell Webb, 20, also of Hayward, California, was sentenced by U.S. District Judge Kent J. Dawson to eight years in prison and 10 years of supervised release. Webb pleaded guilty in January to one count of coercion and enticement. Both men will also have to register as sex offenders when they are released from prison.
“Transporting minors across state lines to work as prostitutes is a federal felony crime with serious penalties,” said U.S. Attorney Bogden. “We are working with our federal, state and local law enforcement and community partners to ensure that the persons who commit these types of crimes are prosecuted.”
According to the court records in West’s case, on May 3, 2013, West and a 16-year-old girl victim and others traveled in several vehicles from San Jose, California to Las Vegas. The next day, West, the 16-year-old girl, and another male checked into a motel on the Boulder Highway. West told the girl to make money (by committing sex acts) to pay for the room. The girl walked the Boulder Highway in search of dates and solicited separate dates with four men who she took back to the motel room. The girl earned a total of $260, part of which was provided to West after each date. The girl was arrested on May 4, 2013, when she attempted to solicit a date from an undercover Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department Officer in the motel parking lot.
According to the court records in Webb’s case, in early 2013, Webb and a co-defendant, Seagram Miller, met one of the victims, a 12-year-old female, in Oakland, California, where she was working as a prostitute. Shortly thereafter, the 12-year-old began working as a prostitute for Webb and Miller and provided the money she made working as a prostitute to them. In about April 2013, Miller met a 16-year-old female on Facebook, and she also began working as a prostitute for Miller and Webb. In April 2013, Miller, Webb, and the two minor girls, decided to travel to Las Vegas to make money. Before leaving, Webb and the 16-year-old girl posted an advertisement on MyRedbook.com so that they would have dates lined up when they arrived in Las Vegas. The advertisement contained photographs of the 16-year-old. On April 29, 2013, Webb, Miller, and the two minor girls drove from Oakland to Las Vegas and stayed in a rented hotel room on Las Vegas Boulevard. Both girls worked as prostitutes on April 30 and in early May.
Miller also pleaded guilty and is scheduled to be sentenced on May 20, 2014.
The cases were investigated the FBI and Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department, as part of the Innocence Lost Task Force. The cases are being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorneys Nicholas D. Dickinson and Phillip N. Smith, Jr.
The case was brought as part of Project Safe Childhood (PSC), a nationwide initiative launched in May 2006 by the Department of Justice to combat the growing epidemic of child sexual exploitation and abuse. Led by the United States Attorneys’ Offices and the Criminal Division’s Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section, PSC marshals federal, state, and local resources to locate, apprehend, and prosecute individuals who sexually exploit children, and to identify and rescue victims. For more information about PSC, please visit www.usdoj.gov/psc.