Orlando Man Sentenced To Life In Prison For Sex Trafficking
Tampa, FL - U.S. District Judge Mary S. Scriven today sentenced Weylin O. Rodriguez (29, Orlando) to life plus 5 years in federal prison for sex trafficking of a minor by force, fraud and coercion; using a firearm in furtherance of a sex trafficking crime; transporting minors over state lines for the purpose of engaging in prostitution through coercion and enticement; and being a felon in possession of a firearm. Rodriguez was found guilty by a federal jury on November 2, 2012.
According to evidence presented at trial, in December 2010, Rodriguez met a 15- year-old minor in Ybor City. Rodriguez offered to give the minor a ride home, but instead of taking her home, he drove her to Orlando and forced her to engage in prostitution on Orange Blossom Trail. The investigation revealed that, on Thanksgiving Day 2010, Rodriguez held the female victims for several months and forced them into prostitution. In or about January 2011, Rodriguez transported the girls between Orlando and Charlotte, North Carolina for the purpose of prostitution. In addition to the minors, Rodriguez recruited at least two adult victims by promising them jobs as models. Once the girls met with Rodriguez, he held them against their will and forced them into prostitution.
This case was investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation, Metropolitan Bureau of Investigation, the Orange County Sheriff's Office, and the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department. It was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Stacie B. Harris and Department of Justice Trial Attorney Maureen Cain.
This case was brought as part of Project Safe Childhood, a nationwide initiative launched in May 2006 by the Department of Justice to combat the growing epidemic of child sexual exploitation and abuse. Led by the United States Attorneys' Offices and the Criminal Division's Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section, Project Safe Childhood marshals federal, state, and local resources to locate, apprehend, and prosecute individuals who sexually exploit children, and to identify and rescue victims. For more information about Project Safe Childhood, please visit www.usdoj.gov/psc. For more information about internet safety education, please visit www.usdoj.gov/psc and click on the tab "resources."