CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP/WBTW) – Federal prosecutors announced long sentences for the wife and mother of a man jailed in North Carolina. All three pleaded guilty to trafficking underage girls for sex to raise money for his bond.
A Monday statement by the U.S. Attorney’s Office in the Western District of North Carolina says Brianna Leshay Wright has been sentenced to 10 years in prison for sex trafficking a minor. Her mother-in-law, Tanya Fuentes, has been sentenced to two years for conspiracy.
Prosecutors say Wright’s husband, Zerrell Fuentes, arranged the scheme in jail, recruiting girls to engage in prostitution to earn money for his bail. The women then carried out the plan.
The trio was indicted by a grand jury for driving three minors from Charlotte to Myrtle Beach for prostitution. The indictment document says the events took place between April 28, 2016, and May 8, 2016, and involved three female victims under 18 from North Carolina.
The document says Zerrell Fuentes used a phone to recruit minor victim to engage in sex acts for money for his benefit while he was in jail in North Carolina. The money from the conspiracy would be used to pay his bond so he could get out of jail, the bill of indictment said.
The Charlotte Observer reports Zerrell Fuentes was jailed in a hit-and-run case at the time. Now he faces 10 years to life for sex trafficking.
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