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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Northern District of Iowa

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Thursday, April 3, 2014

Milwaukee Man Sentenced To Life In Prison For Transporting Minors Across State Lines For Prostitution

A man who transported two minor girls from Milwaukee, Wisconsin to Iowa for purposes of having them engage in prostitution was sentenced today to life in prison without the possibility of parole.

Robert Jackson, age 32, from Milwaukee, Wisconsin, received the prison term after a November 5, 2013, guilty plea to one count of transporting minors across state lines with the intent to engage in criminal sexual activity. 

At the guilty plea hearing, Jackson admitted that on July 16, 2013, he transported two females from Milwaukee, Wisconsin, to Cedar Rapids, Iowa, for the purpose of having them engage in prostitution.  The girls were each under 18 years of age at the time. 

At the sentencing hearing, the government proved one girl was 15 years old, and the other 17 years old, at the time of the offense.  The evidence showed that Jackson threatened to kill the 15 year-old child and her family if she ever attempted to leave him.  On one occasion when both girls left him for a time, Jackson beat the 15 year-old with a belt and raped her, and beat the 17-year-old in her face with his fists.  Jackson had both girls engage in prostitution in Milwaukee and Iowa, and kept the money they earned.  The evidence further showed that he coerced by threats and force both girls to travel to Iowa for purposes of prostitution.  The evidence disclosed that Jackson later bragged to other inmates about using force and sexual abuse of the girls to keep them in line and control them as his prostitutes.

Jackson was sentenced in Cedar Rapids by United States District Court Chief Judge Linda R. Reade.  Jackson was sentenced to life in prison.  A special assessment of $100 was imposed.  There is no parole in the federal system.

“This defendant preyed on vulnerable young girls and exploited them for prostitution,” said United States Attorney Kevin W. Techau.  “The underground nature of human trafficking makes it hard to fight and it can be especially dangerous for young people and disadvantaged kids in both big cities and rural areas.  The U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Northern District of Iowa is committed to working with our law enforcement partners to investigate human trafficking, as well as working with our local non-governmental, community-based and faith-based organizations to identify, rescue and assist victims of trafficking.”

Jackson is being held in the United States Marshal’s custody until he can be transported to a federal prison.

The case was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney C.J. Williams and was investigated by the Johnson County Sheriff’s Office, the Iowa Division of Intelligence, and the Marion Police Department, with the assistance of the Milwaukee Human Trafficking Task Force. 

Court file information is available at https://ecf.iand.uscourts.gov/cgi-bin/login.pl.  The case file number is 13-cr-0063.

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Updated February 19, 2015