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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
District of South Dakota

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Wednesday, February 2, 2022

Sioux Falls Woman Sentenced for Sex Trafficking of a Child

United States Attorney Dennis R. Holmes announced that a Sioux Falls, South Dakota, woman convicted of Sex Trafficking of a Child was sentenced on January 31, 2022, by U.S. District Judge Karen E. Schreier.

Melanie Joyce Hollingsworth, age 37, was sentenced to 210 months in federal prison, followed by 10 years of supervised release, and a special assessment to the Federal Crime Victims Fund in the amount of $100.

Hollingsworth was indicted by a federal grand jury on February 2, 2021.  She pled guilty on October 15, 2021.

The conviction stemmed from incidents between January 11, 2020, and October 10, 2020, when Hollingsworth sex trafficked a minor female.  Hollingsworth knowingly and intentionally recruited the juvenile female to engage in commercial sexual acts with men in the Sioux Falls area.  Hollingsworth communicated with customers using her cellular telephone, sending text messages and calling them to arrange the sexual acts.  Hollingsworth received money for the commercial sexual acts in the form of cash and Western Union wire transfers.

This case was investigated by the Sioux Falls Police Department, Federal Bureau of Investigation, and the South Dakota Division of Criminal Investigation.  Assistant U.S. Attorney Jeffrey C. Clapper prosecuted the case.

Hollingsworth was immediately turned over to the custody of the U.S. Marshals Service.

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Updated February 2, 2022