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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
District of Massachusetts

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Wednesday, January 13, 2016

Two Men Charged with Sex Trafficking Women

BOSTON – A Brockton man and a Boston man have been arrested and charged in U.S. District Court in Boston with sex trafficking.  The indictment was unsealed in federal court today.

Kwamaine J. Wells, 26, was indicted on two counts of sex trafficking by force, fraud or coercion, four counts of transportation of an individual with intent to engage in prostitution, and one count of conspiracy to transport an individual for prostitution.  Akil J. DeCoteau, 27, was indicted on one count of transportation of an individual with intent to engage in prostitution and one count of conspiracy. 

According to the indictment, between April 2013 and February 2014, Wells transported four women between Maine, Massachusetts and New York with the intent that they engage in prostitution, and used force and threats to coerce two of the women to engage in prostitution.  In January 2014, DeCoteau transported a woman between Maine, Massachusetts and New York with the intent that she engage in prostitution.  The indictment further alleges that from May 2013 to January 2014, Wells and DeCoteau conspired together to transport women between Massachusetts, New Jersey and New York with the intent that they engage in prostitution. 

The charge of sex trafficking provides for a mandatory minimum sentence of 15 years and a maximum penalty of life in prison, three years of supervised release and a fine of $250,000.  The charge of transportation to engage in prostitution provides for a sentence of no greater than 10 years in prison, three years of supervised release and a fine of $250,000.  Actual sentences for federal crimes are typically less than the maximum penalties.  Sentences are imposed by a federal district court judge based upon the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines and other statutory factors.

United States Attorney Carmen M. Ortiz and Matthew Etre, Special Agent in Charge of the Homeland Security Investigations in Boston made the announcement today.  The case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Miranda Hooker of Ortiz’s Civil Rights Enforcement Team.

The details contained in the indictment are allegations.  The defendants are presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt in a court of law.

Topic: 
Human Trafficking
Updated January 13, 2016