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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Eastern District of Virginia

Tuesday, April 19, 2016

Fairfax Man Pleads Guilty to Sex Trafficking a 15 Year-Old Girl

ALEXANDRIA, Va. – Derek Leon Mantilla, 21, formerly of Fairfax, pleaded guilty today to sex trafficking of minor.

Based on court documents, from at least November 2014 through February 2015, Mantilla, together with Ismael Antonio Mendez and Caitlyn Ann Smith, recruited a 15 year-old girl to engage in commercial sex acts to pay off a debt that was owed to Mantilla by Mendez.  The adults taught the girl how to prostitute, took photos of her to use in advertisements, and created advertisements for commercial sex that were posted on the Internet.  The three adults knew the girl was a minor and instructed her to lie about her age to customers.  Over a three month period, the adults traveled with the girl through various states, including Virginia, for the purposes of advertising and engaging the girl in commercial sex.  During that period, the girl worked seven days a week and saw an average of 10 to 12 customers a night.  Once the girl had earned enough to pay off the debt, the Mantilla directed her to leave the adults, and she did. 

Co-defendants Ismael Antonio Mendez and Caitlyn Ann Smith previously pleaded guilty in the case. 

Mantilla faces a mandatory minimum of 10 years and a maximum penalty of life in prison when sentenced on July 8. The maximum statutory sentence is prescribed by Congress and is provided here for informational purposes, as the sentencing of the defendant will be determined by the court based on the advisory Sentencing Guidelines and other statutory factors.

Dana J. Boente, U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Virginia; Paul M. Abbate, Assistant Director in Charge of the FBI’s Washington Field Office; and Colonel Edwin C. Roessler, Jr., Chief of the Fairfax County Police Department, made the announcement after the plea was accepted by U.S. District Judge Leonie M. Brinkema.  Assistant U.S. Attorney Whitney Dougherty Russell and Special Assistant U.S. Attorney Lauren Britsch are prosecuting the case.

A copy of this press release may be found on the website of the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of Virginia.  Related court documents and information may be found on the website of the District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia or on PACER by searching for Case No. 1:16-cr-91.

Human Trafficking
Updated April 20, 2016