Federal Jury Finds Truck Driver Guilty of Sex Trafficking a Minor and Production of Child Sex Abuse Materials
For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Western District of Pennsylvania
PITTSBURGH - After deliberating for just over an hour on Friday, a federal jury of 12 men and women found Roderick King, who chose to represent himself, guilty of one count of sex trafficking a minor and two counts of production of material depicting the sexual exploitation of a minor, United States Attorney Cindy K. Chung announced today.
King, 32, formerly of the suburbs of Chicago, Illinois, was tried before United States District Judge Christy Criswell Wiegand in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.
According to Assistant United States Attorneys Rebecca L. Silinski and Jeffrey R. Bengel, who tried the case, the evidence presented at trial established that over three-year period of time, beginning in 2017, King, a truck driver, paid the Minor Victim, who was 14 years-old when King first met her, hundreds of dollars in cash for sex on approximately 10 occasions, and produced two videos of his sexual exploitation of the Minor Victim.
King used social media accounts – namely, the Snapchat username “fuckabeatiwastr” and multiple Facebook accounts, including “Raphael Bloomberg” and “Raphael Huxtable” – to communicate with the Minor Victim. Messages between King and the Minor Victim were presented during trial, which prosecutors stated demonstrated that King used these accounts to maintain control over, manipulate and exploit his victim.
In the Fall of 2020, however, the Minor Victim walked into the Butler Township Police station and told law enforcement about the crimes committed against her by King. The Minor Victim bravely testified at trial and when questioned by King, resolutely stated that she was motivated to report these crimes to police because “30-year-old men shouldn’t be having sex with little kids.”
Judge Wiegand stated that sentencing will be scheduled by further order of court. The law provides for a sentence of not less than 15 years to life in prison, a fine of not more than $250,000 or both. Under the Federal Sentencing Guidelines, the actual sentence imposed is based on the seriousness of the offenses and the prior criminal history, if any, of the defendant.
The Court ordered King remain detained pending sentencing.
The Department of Homeland Security Investigations (HSI), Human Trafficking and Child Exploitation Group, and special agents with the Pennsylvania Office of the Attorney General Child Predator Section, with the assistance of Butler Township Police Department, and Butler County Children and Youth Services, conducted the investigation that led to the prosecution of King.
The charges for which King has been convicted concern a specific victim. Additional members of the public who may have information about King’s involvement in sex trafficking and child exploitation are encouraged to call HSI’s tip-line at 866-347-2423 and state the report is to HSI-Pittsburgh regarding Roderick King.
This prosecution is part of Operation T.E.N. (Trafficking Ends Now), an umbrella coalition for law enforcement, community and non-profit partners in the 25 counties in the Western District of Pennsylvania, formed and led by the United States Attorney’s Office for the Western District of Pennsylvania. AUSA Silinski serves as the Human Trafficking Prosecution’s Coordinator and oversees Operation T.E.N. and community outreach. This coordinated effort aims to end human trafficking through education and improved cooperation among law enforcement partners, victim service providers and community members, thereby enhancing the Office’s ability to empower victims of human trafficking to become thriving survivors.
Updated July 11, 2022
Project Safe Childhood