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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Middle District of Pennsylvania

Monday, March 28, 2016

New York Man Pleads Guilty To Child Sex Trafficking

SCRANTON—The United States Attorney’s Office for the Middle District of Pennsylvania announced that a 29-year-old Brooklyn, New York man pleaded guilty March 25, 2016 to sex trafficking of a minor before U.S. Magistrate Judge Karoline Mehalchick in Scranton.  

According to United States Attorney Peter Smith, the defendant, Clinton Hayden a/k/a “Showtime,” admitted to recruiting, enticing, and transporting two minor females from Luzerne County to Brooklyn to engage in commercial sex acts.  

Hayden was charged in an Information filed in December 2015, as a result of an investigation by agents of Homeland Security Investigations and the Pennsylvania State Police.

Hayden admitted that he recruited the minor females, posted photographs of them in advertisements on a website, and transported them to Brooklyn, where they engaged in prostitution at Hayden’s direction.

Hayden faces a mandatory minimum sentence of 10 years in prison and a potential maximum sentence of life in prison. Judge Mehalchick ordered a pre-sentence investigation to be completed, and ordered Hayden to be detained in prison pending sentencing. Hayden will be sentenced by Senior U.S. District Court Judge Richard P. Conaboy at a later date.

This case was brought as part of Project Safe Childhood, a nationwide initiative launched in May 2006 by the Department of Justice to combat the growing epidemic of child sexual exploitation and abuse. Led by the United States Attorneys' Offices and the Criminal Division's Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section, Project Safe Childhood marshals federal, state, and local resources to locate, apprehend, and prosecute individuals who sexually exploit children, and to identify and rescue victims. For more information about Project Safe Childhood, please visit For more information about internet safety education, please visit and click on the tab "resources."

Assistant U.S. Attorney Francis P. Sempa is prosecuting the case.

Indictments and Criminal Informations are only allegations. All persons charged are presumed to be innocent unless and until found guilty in court.

A sentence following a finding of guilt is imposed by the Judge after consideration of the applicable federal sentencing statutes and the Federal Sentencing Guidelines.

The maximum penalty under federal law is life imprisonment, a term of supervised release following imprisonment, and a fine. Under the Federal Sentencing Guidelines, the Judge is also required to consider and weigh a number of factors, including the nature, circumstances and seriousness of the offense; the history and characteristics of the defendant; and the need to punish the defendant, protect the public and provide for the defendant's educational, vocational and medical needs. For these reasons, the statutory maximum penalty for the offense is not an accurate indicator of the potential sentence for a specific defendant.

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Project Safe Childhood
Updated March 28, 2016