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Press Release

St. Petersburg Child Sex Trafficker Sentenced To 40 Years In Federal Prison

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Middle District of Florida

Tampa, Florida – U.S. District Judge Kathryn Kimball Mizelle has sentenced Julius Arline (31, St. Petersburg) to 40 years in federal prison, followed by a lifetime of supervised release, for engaging in the sex trafficking of minor children. Arline was also ordered to register as a sex offender and to pay restitution to the victims. Arline had pleaded guilty on March 11, 2022.

According to court documents, Julius Arline and his co-defendant, Leslie Reio, obtained, enticed and housed two child victims in a St. Petersburg hotel room, forcing them to commit commercial sex acts between March 6, 2021, and March 14, 2021. The child victims (14 and 15 years old) were rescued after being forced to take sexually explicit photographs of themselves that were used as online advertisements for commercial sex with strangers. The two children were kept in the hotel room where they were provided illegal drugs and forced to participate in a number of sex dates over an 8-day period. After being forced to engage in the sex acts and receiving payment, the child victims were required to give money to Arline and Reio.

A sentencing hearing for Reio is scheduled for July 8, 2022.

“Child sex trafficking is happening every day, and this significant sentence exemplifies HSI’s commitment to protecting children from sex trafficking crimes and victimization,” said HSI Tampa acting Assistant Special Agent in Charge Jennifer Silliman. “HSI, alongside St. Petersburg Police Department, are committed to locating, and recovering child victims, as well as ensuring predators are held responsible for their heinous crimes.”

This case was investigated by Homeland Security Investigations and the Tampa Bay Human Trafficking Task Force, with substantial assistance from St. Petersburg Police Department and the United States Marshals Service. It was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Erin Claire Favorit.

This case was brought as part of the Tampa Bay Human Trafficking Task Force of the Middle District of Florida, which is one of 13 task forces in the country to receive grant funding from the Department of Justice’s Bureau of Justice Assistance. The Task Force is a collaboration of local, state, and federal law enforcement agents working together with organizations to detect, investigate, and prosecute human trafficking in the Tampa Bay area. This includes trafficking of minors, forced labor, transnational sex trafficking, and sex trafficking of adults by force, fraud, or coercion. More information about the Tampa Bay Human Trafficking Task Force can be found at Information on the Department of Justice’s efforts to combat human trafficking can be found at

Updated June 10, 2022

Project Safe Childhood
Human Trafficking