U.S. Attorney's Office
Middle District of Florida
(813) 274-6000
December 12, 2014

St. Petersburg Man Sentenced to 30 Years in Federal Prison for Sex Trafficking Children

TAMPA, FL—United States District Judge Richard A. Lazzara today sentenced Derrick L. Hayes, a/k/a “D-Man” (27, St. Petersburg), to 30 years in federal prison, followed by a lifetime of supervised release, for engaging in the sex trafficking of children. He must also register as a sex offender. Hayes pleaded guilty on September 25, 2014.

According to court documents, in December 2012 and January 2013, Hayes’s conspired with his girlfriend, Keosha Renee Jones, to arrange for two 14-year-old victims to engage in prostitution in St. Petersburg. After meeting the victims, Hayes took them to a residence and directed them to engage in sex acts with his associates. With Hayes’s knowledge, Jones also took the victims to a hotel, where the victims engaged in additional sex acts for money. Hayes visited the hotel regularly, collected the money, and directed the victims to engage in additional sex acts with his associates. In addition to beating and threatening Jones in the victims’ presence, he also threatened the victims.

On September 19, 2013, Jones pleaded guilty to her role in the conspiracy. She will be sentenced on January 9, 2014.

This case was investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the Clearwater Police Department, the St. Petersburg Police Department, and the Largo Police Department. It is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorneys Joseph W. Swanson and Stacie B. Harris.

It is another case brought as part of Project Safe Childhood, 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 United States Attorneys’ Offices and the Criminal Division’s Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section (CEOS), Project Safe Childhood 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 Project Safe Childhood, please visit www.projectsafechildhood.gov.

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