News and Press Releases

Defendant Sentenced for Forcing a Young Mexican Woman into Sexual Slavery in New York

November 05, 2009

Jose Luis Guzman Sanchez was sentenced today to 20 years’ imprisonment based on his guilty plea to sex trafficking for forcing a young Mexican woman into prostitution both in Mexico and in the United States. The proceeding was held before United States District Judge Brian M. Cogan in federal court in Brooklyn, New York.

The sentence was announced by Benton J. Campbell, United States Attorney for the Eastern District of New York, and James T. Hayes, Jr., Special Agent-in-Charge, Immigration and Customs Enforcement, Department of Homeland Security, New York (ICE).

As alleged in court filings and as admitted by the defendant during his guilty plea, Guzman Sanchez coerced a young Mexican woman, identified as Jane Doe #1, into forced prostitution through a pattern of isolation, sexual assault, beatings, threats, and false promises. The victim was seventeen years old when the defendant first raped her and forced her into prostitution in Mexico for approximately four years. Thereafter, the defendant arranged for the victim to be smuggled into the United States where she could earn him more money as a prostitute. The defendant’s prostitution operation was based in Corona, Queens, but the victim was also forced to work in Manhattan, Newark, New Jersey, Baltimore, Maryland, and Washington, D.C., for more than two years. The victim was not permitted to keep any of the money she earned or send any of it to her family in Mexico. Instead, the defendant took all of the prostitution proceeds and beat the victim when he suspected she was hiding money from him or when she refused to work.

“Sex traffickers are on notice that they will be aggressively investigated by this Office and prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law,” stated United States Attorney Campbell.

“Targeting traffickers who prey on human beings is a priority for ICE,” said Special Agent-in-Charge Hayes, ICE Office of Investigations in New York. “Human trafficking is a ruthless criminal enterprise with a callous disregard for the value of human life. We are committed to aggressively pursuing these types of cases where people’s lives are jeopardized for personal profit.”

The government’s case is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Monica E. Ryan.

The Defendant:

Age: 31

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