News and Press Releases

United States Attorney Jenny A. Durkan
Western District of Washington

Auburn Man Indicted For Sex Trafficking Women In Western Washington And Oregon

Abusive Pimp Advertised Women on Backpage.com

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
July 31, 2014

            A 33-year-old Auburn, Washington man was indicted today by a federal grand jury in Seattle on four federal counts involving the sex trafficking of two female victims, announced U.S. Attorney Jenny A. Durkan.  JOHN HENRY CYPRIAN, JR., aka “Lucky,” was arrested and booked into state custody in June 2014.  The arrest followed a Bellevue Police Department investigation into CYPRIAN’s sex trafficking of two different women, both in Western Washington and in Portland, Oregon.  CYPRIAN was indicted on two counts of sex trafficking through force, fraud, and coercion and two counts of Transportation for the Purpose of Prostitution Through Coercion and Enticement.  CYPRIAN will be transferred to federal custody with arraignment on the indictment scheduled in about two weeks.

            CYPRIAN was arrested at a condominium he had rented in Auburn, but the investigation revealed that between April 2013 and his arrest in June 2014, he had rented hotel rooms throughout the greater Seattle area as part of his prostitution scheme.  According to records filed in the case, CYPRIAN forced the women to work as prostitutes at hotels in SeaTac, Bellevue, Mountlake Terrace, and Portland.  CYPRIAN posted ads on Backpage.com and other adult sexual services websites advertising the women.  CYPRIAN allegedly controlled the women with beatings and threats, and forced them to give him all the money they earned as prostitutes. 

            “Traffickers prey upon vulnerable women – convincing them that they have nowhere to go and even less value.  It takes courage to break the bonds an abusive pimp uses to keep his victims under control,” said U.S. Attorney Jenny A. Durkan.  “We will continue to work closely with state prosecutors to ensure that violent sex traffickers cannot prey on the most vulnerable in our communities – whether they are juveniles or adults.”

            “This case is yet another example of the Bellevue Police Department working with Federal prosecutors to address the issue of human sex trafficking,” said Bellevue Police Chief Jim Montgomery.  “We will continue to work hand in hand with our partners, both at the federal level as well as locally, to address this important issue.”

            Sex trafficking through force, fraud, or coercion is punishable by a mandatory minimum term of 15 years and up to life in prison and at least five years and up to life of supervised release.  Transportation for the Purpose of Prostitution through Coercion and Enticement is punishable by up to twenty years in prison and up to three years of supervised release.

            The charges contained in the Indictment are only allegations.  A person is presumed innocent unless and until he or she is proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt in a court of law.

            The case was investigated by the Bellevue Police Department with assistance from the King County Prosecuting Attorney's Office, the Mountlake Terrace Police Department and the FBI.  The case is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Kate Crisham.

 

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