Texan Sentenced to 120 Months in Prison for Transporting a Minor for Prostitution
SHREVEPORT, LA—United States Attorney Stephanie A. Finley announced that a Houston man was sentenced Tuesday to 120 months in prison for bringing a minor from Texas to Louisiana and forcing her to engage in prostitution.
Joshua Baker, 29, of Houston, was sentenced by U.S. District Judge S. Maurice Hicks Jr. for one count of transportation of a minor in interstate commerce with the intent to engage in criminal sexual activity. He was also sentenced to serve five years of supervised release, and must register as a sex offender for life. According to evidence presented at the August 21, 2014 guilty plea, Baker began communicating with a minor in San Antonio, Texas, in 2012. He then transported her from Texas to Shreveport in May of 2013 and forced her to engage in prostitution. For two to three weeks after that, he directed her to engage in prostitution and physically abused her if she refused.
“My office is committed to seeking justice for victims of human trafficking,” Finley stated. “The defendant preyed on a young victim and exploited her for profit. We will continue to work with our law enforcement partners to track down and prosecute sex traffickers.”
The FBI, Child Exploitation Task Force, conducted the investigation. Assistant U.S. Attorney Joseph G. Jarzabek prosecuted the case.
This case is part of Project Safe Childhood, a U.S. Department of Justice nationwide initiative to combat the growing epidemic of child sexual exploitation and abuse. Led by U.S. Attorneys’ Offices and the Criminal Division’s Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section, Project Safe Childhood marshals federal, state and local resources to better locate, apprehend and prosecute individuals who exploit children via the Internet, as well as to identify and rescue victims. For more information about Project Safe Childhood, please visit www.projectsafechildhood.gov.
Those concerned may also leave tips with the FBI at tips.fbi.gov. Tips may be submitted anonymously. The Shreveport FBI office number is (318) 861-1890.