Father and Son Plead Guilty to Sex Trafficking
COLUMBUS—Keith A. Arrick Sr., 47, of Ft. Mitchell, Kentucky pleaded guilty in U.S. District Court today to sex trafficking by force, fraud or coercion. His son, Keith A. Arrick Jr., 21, of Columbus, Ohio pleaded guilty in July to sex trafficking of children.
Carter M. Stewart, United States Attorney for the Southern District of Ohio, Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine and members of the Central Ohio Human Trafficking Task Force, including Marlon V. Miller, Special Agent in Charge, U.S. Homeland Security Investigations, Colonel Paul Pride of the Ohio State Highway Patrol and Columbus Police Chief Kim Jacobs announced the plea entered today before U.S. District Senior Judge Peter C. Economus.
The investigation by the Central Ohio Human Trafficking Task Force found that between September 2013 and February 2014, the men used various hotels in the Columbus area to harbor women, including a minor female, to engage in commercial sex acts for the financial benefit of the defendants. The men recruited customers through Internet websites by posting photos of the women or others who resembled the women, instructing the women how much to charge for the various acts then kept a portion of the money for themselves, and provided the women with illegal narcotics, including heroin. The investigation found that one victim was brought to Columbus from Kentucky. Keith A. Arrick Sr. used physical violence and threats of physical violence if the victims indicated they wished to stop performing commercial sex acts.
Sex trafficking by force, fraud or coercion is punishable by at least 15 years and up to life in prison. Sex trafficking of a minor is punishable by at least ten years and up to life in prison. Both men remain in custody as sentencing is pending.
U.S. Attorney Stewart commended the cooperative investigation by the Central Ohio Human Trafficking Task Force, which was formed in 2012 and is part of the Ohio Attorney General’s Ohio Organized Crime Investigations Commission, and which also includes authorities from the Attorney General’s Bureau of Criminal Investigation (BCI), U.S. Homeland Security Investigations, Columbus Division of Police, Ohio State Highway Patrol, Powell Police Department, Federal Bureau of Investigation and the Delaware County Prosecutor’s Office. Assistant U.S. Attorney Heather Hill is representing the government in this case.
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