Local rapper sent to federal prison for sex trafficking of a minor
HOUSTON – A 27-year-old Houston resident and member of The Sauce Factory has been sentenced for conspiracy and sex trafficking, announced U.S. Attorney Ryan K. Patrick. A Houston federal jury deliberated for less than eight hours before convicting Jaimian Sims May 20 after five days of trial.
Today, U.S. District Judge David Hittner sentenced Sims to life in prison. Sims was further ordered to pay $1575 in restitution to a minor victim. In handing down the sentence, Judge Hittner stated Sims was a threat to society. The court also noted he had received several letters of support, one in particular claiming Sims was a positive role model in the community. The government contended Sims has not made any contribution to society and that he and other members of The Sauce Factory waive around firearms, large amounts of cash and glorify a materialistic lifestyle built on the backs of sexually-exploited women. Sims will also be required to register as a sex offender.
At trial, the jury heard that Sims trafficked both adult and minor females.
In one instance, Sims had directed a co-defendant - Tabbetha Mangis, 22, of La Grange - to find another co-defendant - Gary Shawn Haynes Jr. - 23 of Houston - to find Haynes a girl for prostitution. The victim, only 17 years of age, was picked up from her residence and transported to a 5,000 square foot residence in Northwest Houston, known as “The Mansion.”
After a brief stay there, the jury heard that the minor was taken to the Express Inn where she was given an identification card in order to rent a room. Sims had instructed an adult victim to provide the card to the minor. He had also told that adult to take photos of the minor female victim and post ads for her which was used to solicit customers who would pay for sex.
The jury heard testimony from the adult victim who described her fear of Sims because he always carried a gun and he had assaulted some of the other women who engaged in commercial sex on his behalf.
Testimony also revealed the minor victim wanted to be “arrested” because she was afraid the perpetrators would think she was speaking to law enforcement on her own. This dovetailed with the government’s expert testimony on victimology and the pimp/prostitution subculture amongst those involved in that world as “the game.” The expert described for the jury the meaning of several terms associated with and used by those within this subculture to include victims and defendants.
The jury also saw and heard three rap videos featuring Sims which contained many of the terms people use in the game. In the videos, Sims refers to two of his co-defendants and their roles in the organization. He references selling “white” women and how successful he is at being a pimp.
The defense attempted to convince the jury that the women were not victims and engaged in the sex acts willingly nor did he use force, fraud 0r coercion to make them do so. They were not convinced and found him guilty of conspiracy to commit sex trafficking of a minor and sex trafficking of a minor.
Mangis and Haynes previously pleaded guilty for their roles.
Sims has been and will remain in custody pending transfer to a U.S. Bureau of Prisons facility to be determined in the near future.
The Harris County Constable’s Office Precinct 4 and FBI conducted the investigation with the assistance of the Harris County District Attorney’s Office as part of the Human Trafficking Rescue Alliance (HTRA).
Established in 2004, the United States Attorney’s office in Houston formed the HTRA to combine resources with federal, state and local enforcement agencies and prosecutors, as well as non-governmental service organizations to target human traffickers while providing necessary services to those that the traffickers victimized. Since its inception, HTRA has been recognized as a national model in identifying and assisting victims of human trafficking and prosecuting those engaged in trafficking offenses.
Assistant U.S. Attorneys Sherri Zack and Kimberly Leo prosecuted the case.