Nevada Man Sentenced for Attempted Sex Trafficking
United States Attorney Randolph J. Seiler announced that a Henderson, Nevada, man convicted of Attempted Trafficking in Involuntary Servitude and Forced Labor was sentenced on June 2, 2017, by Chief Judge Jeffrey L. Viken, U.S. District Court.
Michael Z. Preston, age 29, was sentenced to 24 months of imprisonment, followed by 2 years of supervised release, and ordered to pay a $100 special assessment to the Federal Crime Victims Fund.
Preston was one of four men who were arrested and federally indicted as a result of an undercover sex trafficking operation conducted during the 2015 Sturgis Motorcycle Rally, targeting persons willing to pay to have sex with underage girls obtained through the Internet.
The conviction stemmed from Preston responding to an online advertisement posted by Division of Criminal Investigation undercover agents, which purported to offer young girls for sex. Following several messages with a person Preston believed to be associated with a 15 year-old girl, but who was in fact an undercover agent, he proceeded to negotiate the time and place they would meet, along with the price he would pay, which was $55.
The undercover operation and arrests were a joint effort between the South Dakota Division of Criminal Investigation, the Department of Homeland Security, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the Rapid City Police Department, and the Pennington County Sheriff’s office. Assistant U.S. Attorney Sarah Collins prosecuted the case.
Preston was immediately turned over to the custody of the U.S. Marshals Service.