News and Press Releases

Cleveland Man Sentenced To 14 Years In Prison For Transporting A Minor Across State Lines For Purposes Of Prostitution

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
August 10, 2012

RICHMOND, Va. – Calvin L. Winbush, 43, aka “Good Game,” of Cleveland Heights, Ohio, was sentenced today to 168 months in prison, followed by 5 years of supervised release for conspiracy to transport a minor across state lines for purposes of prostitution and one substantive count of transporting a minor across state lines for purposes of prostitution.  

            Neil H. MacBride, United States Attorney for the Eastern District of Virginia, John S. Adams, Acting Special Agent in Charge of the FBI’s Richmond Field Office; and D.A. Middleton, Chief of Police for the Henrico County Police Division made the announcement after sentencing by United States District Judge Henry E. Hudson.  Winbush pleaded guilty to the charges on April 12, 2012.  
“Child prostitution is among the most heinous of crimes and justifies a severe and lengthy sentence,” said U.S. Attorney MacBride.  “We want the message to be clear.  We have zero tolerance for the crime.” 
“This operation was successful because of the cooperation which occurred between all of the agencies that were involved,” said Chief Middleton.  “It is also an indication there is still more work to be done in addressing crimes of this nature.  We look forward to continuing the positive relationships we have established with our federal partners.”
According to court documents, Winbush was a pimp who transported three females from Ohio to Virginia over New Years’ weekend, 2012, so that the females could engage in prostitution.  The investigation revealed that in December 2011, Winbush’s co-defendant, and his senior prostitute, Sonora Armstrong, aka Seashell, recruited the 15 year old female, Jane Doe, to work as a prostitute for Winbush.  On or about December 30, 2011, Winbush, Armstrong, Jane Doe and another female traveled from Ohio to Virginia, where the females began engaging in acts of prostitution.  On January 3, 2012, Henrico County Police Division responded to a call for assistance from a hotel in Henrico, where they discovered the defendant and the juvenile female. 

            Armstrong was sentenced on July 27, 2012, to 120 months incarceration for transporting a minor across state lines for purposes of prostitution.  Armstrong testified at sentencing that she has worked as a prostitute for Winbush for several years, and that as the “bottom,” or most senior prostitute in his organization, she was sometimes responsible for recruiting or training new prostitutes who were working for Winbush.  The government presented evidence of Winbush’s extensive and lengthy involvement in prostitution, including numerous Facebook and text messages that he sent to women in an effort to recruit them to work for him.  The government also played at sentencing a segment of the Discovery Channel show, American Underworld, in which the defendant appeared on an episode about the commercial sex business and discussed his role as a pimp.  

            This case was investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation and Henrico County Police Division, Vice Unit, as part of an ongoing initiative between the FBI and HCPD targeting persons engaged in human trafficking.  Assistant United States Attorney Jamie L. Mickelson and Special Assistant United States Attorney Mike Feinmel of the Henrico Commonwealth’s Attorney’s Office prosecuted the case on behalf of the United States. 

A copy of this press release may be found on the website of the United States Attorney's Office for the Eastern District of Virginia at http://www.justice.gov/usao/vae.  Related court documents and information may be found on the website of the District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia at http://www.vaed.uscourts.gov or on https://pcl.uscourts.gov.

 

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