Charleston, S.C., man admits intercourse trafficking, cocaine crimes stemming from scheme to coerce girls and women into prostitution | USAO-MT

BILLINGS – A Charleston, South Carolina, man accused in a big intercourse trafficking scheme of coercing girls and women into prostitution for him in Montana and different states admitted to expenses at the moment, Appearing U.S. Legal professional Leif M. Johnson mentioned.

Louis Gregory Venning, often known as “December,” 41, pleaded responsible to intercourse trafficking by pressure, fraud and coercion, intercourse trafficking of a minor, transportation of an individual with intent to have interaction in prostitution and possession with intent to distribute cocaine. Venning faces a compulsory minimal of 15 years to life in jail, a $250,000 fantastic, 5 years to lifetime of supervised launch and a $5,000 particular evaluation on essentially the most severe crime of intercourse trafficking.

A plea settlement reached within the case requires 9 different counts of intercourse trafficking, transportation for prostitution and drug trafficking crimes charged in a second superseding indictment to be dismissed at sentencing if the court docket accepts the settlement. The federal government agrees to not search extra expenses. Restitution is necessary, and Venning agrees to be accountable for full restitution referring to all counts within the second superseding indictment.

U.S. Justice of the Peace Choose Kathleen L. DeSoto presided. Choose DeSoto mentioned she would suggest that Venning’s plea be accepted by U.S. District Choose Dana L. Christensen, who will sentence Venning. Sentencing was set for March 15, 2022. Choose Christensen will decide any sentence after contemplating the U.S. Sentencing Tips and different statutory elements. Venning was detained pending additional proceedings.

In courts paperwork and in statements in court docket, the federal government alleged that at numerous occasions from 2012 to 2020, Venning trafficked girls and women for industrial intercourse and in addition distributed unlawful narcotics, together with cocaine, heroin and methamphetamine. Venning employed coercion and pressure, violence and threats of violence and the widespread use of medicine to advance his prison objectives. Venning recruited and coerced greater than a dozen girls and women, recognized as Jane Does, and compelled them to have interaction in industrial intercourse for him in Billings and different Montana communities. Venning took a few of the Jane Does from Montana to different states, together with Wyoming, Missouri and Georgia, for industrial intercourse work.

The federal government additional alleged that in 2019, Venning met Jane Doe 9 in a motel in Missoula after responding to one among Jane Doe 9’s personal adverts for industrial intercourse. Venning mentioned how she would work for him and in the end she did. Venning turned abusive towards Jane Doe 9, together with bodily assaulting her. In August 2018 in Billings, Venning coerced a lady, recognized as Jane Doe 8, who was beneath the age of 18, to have interaction in industrial intercourse. In 2012, Venning transported one other sufferer, recognized as Jane Doe 5, from Montana to Georgia and Missouri to have interaction in prostitution.

As well as, Venning possessed with intent to distribute cocaine. Jane Does 3 and 4 advised legislation enforcement that whereas working for Venning in industrial intercourse, they obtained cocaine from him. Social media posts collected through the investigation present Venning bragging about and sending cocaine to varied people.

Co-defendant Future Lachelle Nilsen, often known as “Diamond,” pleaded responsible within the case and is awaiting sentencing.

Assistant U.S. Attorneys Zeno B. Baucus and Bryan T. Dake are prosecuting the case, which was investigated by the FBI.

 

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