Sweeny Woman Convicted in Sex Trafficking Conspiracy Involving Three Minors
GALVESTON, Texas - A Sweeny woman has pleaded guilty in Galveston federal court to conspiracy and sex trafficking of children, announced U.S. Attorney Ryan K. Patrick.
Angela Marks, 24, was originally charged with nine others as part of a sex trafficking ring that used sexually-oriented websites to advertise their illicit business employing four minors as young as 16 for commercial sex. The young girls were induced into posing for pictures used in online advertisements for sex and engaged in commercial sex acts for money.
Marks was associated with three of the minor victims who began working for the sex trafficking organization in February 2017. Between Feb. 23-27, 2017, Marks was one of the defendants who directed the victims to pose in sexually provocative positions. Pictures were then taken with her phone.
After customers began responding to advertisements on Backpage.com, Marks would use a computer application to communicate with customers and to monitor the three minor victims during prostitution dates. Marks instructed the minor victims on how to conduct prostitution dates and how much to charge. During prostitution dates involving the minors at the Hobby Inn and Stay Express Inn in Houston, Marks would also hide in the hotel bathroom.
She also collected the proceeds from the prostitution dates and provided condoms, food and drugs to the minor victims.
U.S. District Judge George C. Hanks accepted the plea today and set sentencing for May 9, 2018. At that time, Marks faces up to life in prison and a possible $250,000 maximum fine.
The FBI and Texas Department of Public Safety conducted the investigation with assistance of sheriff’s offices in Brazoria and Galveston Counties and police departments in Galveston, Sherman, Wharton, La Marque and the University of Texas Medical Branch.
Assistant U.S. Attorneys Sherri Zack and Sebastian Edwards are prosecuting the case.