Two Charged With Sex Trafficking of a Child
FORT WORTH, Texas — Two individuals, Deundrea R. Miller, 27, and Brittanie S. Brattain, 21, charged in a federal felony criminal complaint with sex trafficking of a child, by force, fraud or coercion, made their initial appearance in federal court this afternoon, before U.S. Magistrate Judge Jeffrey L. Cureton. Brattain was detained pending further disposition of the matter; Miller is detained pending hearings set for later in the week. Today’s announcement was made by U.S. Attorney Sarah R. Saldaña of the Northern District of Texas.
According to the complaint filed in the case, from September 2012 through January 2013, Miller and Brattain recruited, enticed, harbored and maintained a minor, known as “Jane Doe,” who at the time was 15-years-old, to engage in commercial prostitution activities that were advertised on Backpage.com. Jane Doe engaged in numerous commercial sex acts during this time and turned over all the money she earned from the prostitution to Miller.
The case was brought as part of Project Safe Childhood, a nationwide initiative, which was launched in May 2006 by the Department of Justice, to combat the growing epidemic of child sexual exploitation and abuse. Led by U.S. Attorney’s Offices and the Criminal Division’s Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section, Project Safe Childhood marshals federal, state and local resources to better locate, apprehend and prosecute individuals, who sexually exploit children, and identify and rescue victims. For more information about Project Safe Childhood, please visit http://www.justice.gov/psc/. For more information about internet safety education, please visit http://www.justice.gov/psc/ and click on the tab “resources.”
A federal criminal complaint is a written statement of the essential facts of the offense charged, and must be made under oath before a magistrate judge. A defendant is entitled to the presumption of innocence until proven guilty. The U.S. Attorney’s office has 30 days to present the matter to a grand jury for indictment. The penalty for the charged offense is not less than 10 years or more than life in federal prison and a $250,000 fine.
The investigation is being conducted by U.S. Immigrations and Customs Enforcement’s (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations (HSI), the Arlington Police Department and the Fort Worth Police Department — members of the North Texas Anti-Trafficking Team. Assistant U.S. Attorney Aisha Saleem is in charge of the prosecution.
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