Colorado

Dec 10, 2012 1:47 PM by Kirsten Bennett

12 arrested, accused in Colorado child prostitution ring

The Colorado Attorney General's Office announced the arrests of twelve people for a child prostitution ring which took place in the Denver area and Colorado Springs.

Eight of the twelve individuals are accused of participating in a criminal enterprise that exploited juveniles through human trafficking and pimping-related activities.

Juvenile girls were posted for sale on Backpage.com and made available to "johns" for sex acts. Four of the known "johns" are also in custody, and the underage girls are receiving treatment in undisclosed locations. The criminal enterprise operated in Denver, Aurora, Commerce City, Lakewood, Parker and Colorado Springs.

The Attorney General's Office secured a 36-count indictment against the ring which led to the arrests of Lawrence Richard Martinez, 22, Reginald James Ryan, 31, and Angela Jeanine Ryan, 42, who are all self-reported gang members. Robert Kenth Drinkwater-Mills, 19, Lewis Jerome Smith, 42, Mercedes Devon Sanders 22, Phaedra Lanee Robinson, 42, and Hollie Gene Mintour, 40 made up the criminal enterprise.

The "johns," Hayatullah Khazi, 28, Grant Richard Schoengarth, 32, Richard Neil Gottbreht, 63, and Nathan Theodore Hom, 36, are under arrest for charges including soliciting for child prostitution and patronizing a prostituted child.

"People who get involved in human trafficking do not have regard for their fellow man," said Denver Police Chief Robert White. "They prey on our children and take advantage others. We have to use the full weight of the law to stop these predators."

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