Six Indicted on Federal Child Sex Trafficking Charges
|U.S. Attorney’s Office March 29, 2013|
MEMPHIS, TN—Six individuals have been indicted on federal child sex trafficking charges, announced U.S. Attorney Edward L. Stanton, III, United States Attorney for the Western District of Tennessee; Aaron Ford, Special Agent in Charge of the Memphis Field Office of the Federal Bureau of Investigation; and Toney Armstrong, Director of the Memphis Police Department.
Those indicted are: Anthony Grandberry, 32, of Memphis; Orreco Lyons, also known as “Pico the Pimp,” 32, of Memphis; Keith Gibson, also known as “Greedy” and “Pee-Wee,” 43, of Union City, Tennessee; Vivian Briggs, also known as “Fortune” and “Kisses,” 28, of Memphis; Tamara Ramsey, 37, of Memphis; and Falisha Edwards, 32, of Memphis.
Grandberry, Lyons, Gibson, Ramsey, and Edwards are charged with conspiracy to commit child sex trafficking. Gibson is also charged with child sex trafficking, as is Briggs. Briggs is additionally charged with use of a facility of interstate commerce to promote child sex trafficking.
The charges allege that on December 29, 2012, Lyons gave a 14-year-old girl to Grandberry as partial payment for Grandberry’s assistance in an unrelated matter. Grandberry then paid to post an advertisement for prostitution to Backpage.com. That advertisement featured photographs of the 14-year-old and included Grandberry’s phone number. Ramsey and Edwards assisted him in posting that advertisement. The charges further allege that on January 1, 2013, Grandberry and Gibson directed Edwards to change the Backpage.com advertisement to include Gibson’s phone number instead of Grandberry’s. According to the superseding indictment, Gibson paid to post the new advertisement.
Grandberry, Lyons, Gibson, and Briggs face up to life in prison if convicted of all the charges in the indictment. Gibson and Briggs additionally face a mandatory minimum of 10 years in prison, up to life, if convicted of the child sex trafficking charge. Ramsey and Edwards face up to five years in prison for the conspiracy charge. Federal law does not allow for parole.
This superseding indictment expands on an indictment filed on January 10, 2013, that charged Grandberry and Lyons with conspiracy to commit child sex trafficking. Gibson was previously indicted on the same child sex trafficking charge in a separate indictment also filed on January 10, 2013. Grandberry, Lyons, and Gibson are being held without bond on those earlier charges. Prior to the federal indictment, Grandberry and Lyons were arrested on related state human trafficking charges brought by the Shelby County District Attorney General’s Office.
The case was investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the Memphis Police Department. Assistant U.S. Attorney Jonathan Skrmetti of the U.S. Attorney’s Office’s Civil Rights Unit is prosecuting the case.
U.S. Attorney Edward L. Stanton, III established the Civil Rights Unit in February 2011 to ensure that every individual in the Western District of Tennessee enjoys the rights and freedoms guaranteed by the Constitution of the United States. The Civil Rights Unit assigns dedicated prosecutors to pursue the full spectrum of federal civil rights crimes, including official misconduct, human trafficking, and hate crimes, as well as law enforcement public corruption cases. Since the formation of the Civil Rights Unit, Memphis has consistently ranked as one of the top U.S. Attorney’s Offices in the country for the prosecution of sex trafficking.