Community Living | Coupon | Police Scanner | E-News Signup | Archives | Merchant Directory | Dining Guide
Have a HOT TIP? Call 704-276-6587 Or E-mail us At
Advanced Search
Lincoln Herald | Lincolnton, NC

home : state news : state news May 20, 2022

1/11/2022 9:13:00 AM
U.S. Attorney's Office Recognizes National Human Trafficking Prevention Month
U.S. Attorney Dena J. King Reaffirms the Office's Commitment to Combating Human Trafficking in the Western District

Department Of Justice
Press Release

CHARLOTTE, N.C. – January is National Human Trafficking Prevention Month and the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Western District of North Carolina reaffirms its commitment to combating all forms of human trafficking.

“Human trafficking, which encompasses sex trafficking, forced labor, and domestic servitude, is a crime that impacts our society’s most vulnerable members,” said U.S. Attorney Dena J. King. “The invisible nature of human trafficking poses a challenge for prosecutors and law enforcement, as perpetrators often commit this abhorrent crime in plain sight. Working with our law enforcement and community partners we will continue to raise awareness and shine a light on all forms of human trafficking, work together to identify and assist trafficking victims, and prosecute those who use fraud, force and coercion to profit from the exploitation of other human beings.”

“Right now, there are more than 1,700 human trafficking cases being investigated by the FBI in field offices across the country. Our investigations are not only about taking traffickers off the streets, but about making sure we offer resources, care, and kindness to the victims to help them rebuild their lives. The FBI’s victim assistance specialists work with every trafficking victim to help end the cycle of violence and manipulation they experience,” said FBI Special Agent in Charge Robert R. Wells.

“HSI special agents and officers in your communities and around the globe work tirelessly to uncover, dismantle and disrupt human trafficking every day,” said Special Agent in Charge Ronnie Martinez, who oversees Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) operations in North Carolina and South Carolina. “Human Trafficking Prevention Month is a great reminder to us all, that ‘If you see something, say something.’”

Human Trafficking Prosecutions

In 2021, the Office’s anti-trafficking efforts have resulted in the following prosecutions:

U.S. v. McIllwain – On April 19, 2021, Simone Cherelle McIllwain, 30, of Charlotte, pleaded guilty to sex trafficking of a minor. As filed plea documents show, from December 2 to December 19, 2019, McIllwain did knowingly recruit, entice and transport a minor, recklessly disregarded that the minor was under the age of 18 years old, and that the minor would be caused to engage in a commercial sex act. A sentencing date for McIllwain has not been set.

U.S. v. Dajuan Akeem Blair – On July 1, 2021, Dajuan Akeem Blair, 26, of Cornelius, N.C., pleaded guilty to sex trafficking of a minor. As Blair admitted in court, from December 26 to December 28, 2018, Blair recruited, enticed and transported a minor, having reasonable opportunity to observe the minor was under the age of 18 years old, and knowing that the minor would be caused to engage in a commercial sex act. A sentencing date for Blair has not been set.

U.S. v. Hasty – On October 13, 2021, Milton Antonio Hasty, 31, of Fayetteville, N.C., pleaded guilty to sex trafficking of a minor. According to court records, from January 22, 2019, through June 5, 2019, Hasty did knowingly recruit, entice and transport a minor, recklessly disregarded that the minor was under the age of 18 years old, and that the minor would be caused to engage in a commercial sex act. A sentencing date for Hasty has not been set.

U.S. v. Luong – On January 8, 2021, a federal jury in Charlotte convicted Thuy Tien Luong, 38, of Charlotte, of forced labor, after finding that the defendant compelled the labor of one of her nail technicians at a salon she owned and operated in Davidson, N.C. According to trial evidence, from October 2016 to June 2018, Luong compelled the victim’s labor by, among other things, physically assaulting the victim, threatening to ruin the victim’s reputation with her family, and falsely claiming that the victim owed Luong a fictitious debt. Luong is currently awaiting sentencing.

U.S. Attorney King commended the FBI for their investigative efforts in the prosecutions against McIllwain, Blair and Hasty, and thanked HSI, the Charlotte Mecklenburg Police Department, and the Davidson Police Department for their excellent work in the case against Luong.

The statutory penalties for human trafficking offenses range from a minimum of 15 years to a maximum of life in prison.

“As we continue our fight against all forms of human trafficking, our recent courtroom successes should serve as stark warnings to anyone engaged in this type of repugnant criminal activity: We will find you and hold you accountable to the fullest extent of the law,” said U.S. Attorney King.

* * *

If you believe you are the victim of a trafficking situation or may have information about a potential trafficking situation, call the National Human Trafficking Resource Center (NHTRC) at 1-888-373-7888. NHTRC is a national, toll-free hotline, with specialists available to answer calls from anywhere in the country, 24 hours a day, seven days a week, every day of the year related to potential trafficking victims, suspicious behaviors, and/or locations where trafficking is suspected to occur. You can also text NHTRC at 233733 or submit a tip online.

You can also contact Homeland Security Investigations at 1-866-DHS-2-ICE (1-866-347-2423) or the Charlotte Office of the FBI at 704-672-6100.

1 - Jackie Dameron Farm Bureau

Have Us E-mail You The Latest News
Click Here

Your #1 Local Source for News, Sports, Opinion, Obituaries, Religion, Classifieds, Events, Photos, Community, Coupons, and more!

Serving Lincoln, Catawba, Gaston and Cleveland counties including the areas of Lincolnton, Denver, Maiden, Stanley, Alexis, Vale, Crouse, Iron Station, High Shoals and Cherryville.

Not a newspaper, not a magazine, we’re online – on your computer at home or work, on your smartphone… with news and more 24 hours a day, seven days a week, every day of the year including holidays.

To Make Sure You Always
Get The Latest Updates,
If You Haven’t Already:

Like Our Facebook Page and
Click On SEE FIRST at

Also Follow Us On Twitter 

Article Comment Submission Form
Please feel free to submit your comments.

Article comments are not posted immediately to the Web site. Each submission must be approved by the Web site editor, who may edit content for appropriateness. There may be a delay of 24-48 hours for any submission while the web site editor reviews and approves it.

Note: All information on this form is required. Your telephone number is for our use only, and will not be attached to your comment.
Submit an Article Comment
First Name:
Last Name:
Anti-SPAM Passcode Click here to see a new mix of characters.
This is an anti-SPAM device. It is not case sensitive.

HomeNewsState NewsReligionOpinionSportsObituariesExtrasCommunityClassifiedsSubmitLife

Terms and Use | Merchant Directory | Dining Guide
Site Design and Content
Copyright Lincoln Herald, LLC 2011-2021


Software © 1998-2022 1up! Software, All Rights Reserved