A Fort Worth man was sentenced to life in prison on Monday after being found guilty of sex trafficking underage girls.
Pierre Lagrone, also known as “P” or “Pedro,” was a member of a violent sex trafficking ring with a core of eight men and a pimp for a 17-year-old girl known as Jane Doe No. 2, court documents said.
Lagrone and co-conspirators, Herman Sanders, also known as “Pooh,” 29, and Demarcus Davis, also known as “Zigg,” 26, were found guilty for their roles in a conspiracy to commit sex trafficking of underage girls after a four-day trial in April, according to a news release from the U.S. Attorneys office.
Sanders was previously sentenced to 35 years in prison and Davis is scheduled for sentencing Monday, the release said.
Lagrone and his co-defendants advertised on Backpage.com that Jane Doe No. 2 and other underage girls would perform sex acts for money, according to a federal complaint.
Federal and state authorities collected ads from Backpage.com that showed Jane Doe No. 2 and other juvenile and adult female victims advertising their availability for sex acts in exchange for cash, the complaint said.
Lagrone and Davis were violent pimps who recruited, controlled, and profited off underage female victims through commercial sex acts, the release said. Lagrone and Davis recruited and advertised underage female victims for commercial sex acts.
The defendants communicated with potential clients, collected money, and paid for motels rooms and supplies, the release said. Lagrone and Davis kept almost all, if not all, of the money collected when these commercial sex acts were performed, providing only food, shelter, and clothing to the underage female victims, according to the release.
Sanders conspired with and assisted Lagrone in this sex trafficking, the complaint said.
During an interview with Fort Worth Police Department Human Trafficking detectives, a 16-year-old girl said she was picked up at her house by Jane Doe No. 2 and Sanders and taken to a Super 8 on Interstate 35W south. Once in the motel room, Sanders took several nude photos of her and Jane Doe No. 2 and Jane Doe No. 4 to be used in ads for Backpage.com.
Those photos were sent to Lagrone, who said they could not be used because they were shot completely in the nude. New photos that showed the victims in lingerie were taken and used for the ads, according to the complaint.
Members of the Fort Worth Vice Unit located the teen victims, tracking them down through Backpage.com advertisements, according to the complaint. Once the teens were located they were turned over to investigators with the Fort Worth Major Case Unit for interviews, the complaint said.
Law enforcement officers also interviewed a hotel manager who said it was obvious that Jane Doe No. 2 was engaging in prostitution because of the number of men going in and out of her hotel room, so much so that the hotel was receiving complaints, the complaint said.
This case was investigated by the the Fort Worth, Tyler and Arlington police departments and agents with the U.S. Immigrations and Customs Enforcement’s Homeland Security Investigations and the Federal Bureau of Investigation, according to the release.
Assistant U.S. Attorney P.J. Meitl and Nicole Dana were in charge of the prosecution, the release said.