WASHINGTON, D.C. – The third of three co-defendants in a case investigated by a task force to combat child prostitution has been sentenced in the Southern District of Florida to 14 years in prison, Assistant Attorney General Alice S. Fisher of the Criminal Division and U.S. Attorney R. Alexander Acosta of the Southern District of Florida announced today.
At a hearing before the Honorable Patricia A. Seitz in U.S. District Court in Miami today, Judge Patricia A. Seitz handed down the prison sentence to Mark Madison, 22, of Miami. The judge also imposed 10 years of supervised release and ordered Madison to undergo health, drug and sex offender treatment.
Madison pleaded guilty to the crimes he was sentenced to – one count of knowingly benefiting from participation in a venture which had engaged in an act of sex trafficking of a child by force, fraud, or coercion, and one count of conspiracy to transport a minor in interstate commerce for purposes of prostitution – on Sept. 9, 2005. Two other co-defendants in the same case had also pleaded guilty and were sentenced previously.
Justin Evans, 25, of Miami, was sentenced on Jan. 19, 2006 to 282 months in prison for one count of trafficking a child by force, fraud or coercion to engage in a commercial sex act, and one count of using a facility of interstate commerce to entice a minor to engage in prostitution. As part of his sentencing, Evans was classified as a career criminal offender, and ordered to pay restitution in the amount of $15,846.57 to Medicaid to reimburse medical costs incurred by of one of his victims. He was also sentenced to five years of supervised release.
Chad Yearby of Miami was sentenced on Jan. 24, 2006, to 40 months in prison for one count of conspiracy to transport a minor in interstate or foreign commerce for the purposes of prostitution. Yearby, who pleaded guilty on Aug. 15, 2005 and cooperated with the criminal investigation, was also sentenced to three years of supervised release.
In his plea agreement, Evans admitted to prostituting minors in the Miami area. One of his victims, identified in his plea agreement as Jane Doe No.1, is a Florida resident who was 14 at the time. Evans would either procure “customers” for her, whom she would meet at rented hotel rooms, or he would force her to find customers by walking the streets. The victim gave all the money she earned to Evans, who told her that she should continue to work every day despite being ill.
Yearby and another victim, identified in his plea agreement as Jane Doe No.2, met in April 2005, when the victim was 16 years old. He took her from northern Florida to the Miami area, and introduced her to Madison. The victim began working as a prostitute for Madison, staying at his residence, at hotels and occasionally at Yearby’s residence. Madison would either procure “customers” for her who she would meet at rented hotel rooms, or he would force the victim to find customers by walking the streets. Madison kept all the money the victim earned, and beat and had sexual relations with the victim.
Madison, Evans and Yearby were arrested in May 2006 after making arrangements with a cooperating individual who said he had a customer who would pay for a prostitute. The customer was, in fact, a City of Miami police officer acting in an undercover capacity, and the three defendants were arrested after bringing Jane Doe No.2 to the customer at a hotel.
The investigation, including the undercover operation, was developed by a task force that includes FBI Special Agents and detectives from the City of Miami, Miami Beach and Miami-Dade county. The task force was formed as part of Operation Innocence Lost, a program sponsored by the FBI’s Crimes Against Children Division, the Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section (CEOS) of the Criminal Division, and the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children. Innocence Lost, announced in early 2003, is a nationwide initiative focusing on child victims of interstate sex trafficking in the United States. To date, the Innocence Lost Initiative has resulted in at least 139 open investigations, 505 arrests, 70 indictments and 67 convictions.
Assistant United States Attorney Marc Osborne of the Southern District of Florida handled the prosecution of the case with assistance from CEOS Trial Attorney Alexandra R. Gelber.