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News Release

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Media Relations

Multi-Agency Arrests of Human Trafficking Suspects NR11570cj

Carson:  Based on a criminal investigation initiated earlier this year by a multi-agency task force, several Los Angeles area men were arrested yesterday for alleged human trafficking violations, officials announced today.  

On December 7, 2011, a Los Angeles County Deputy District Attorney, reviewed the investigation and filed arrest warrants for Conspiracy to Commit Human Trafficking (Pimping/Pandering) against, Darrius Sutton, Chad Phillips-Miller, Darius Burks, Leprinceton Burks and Edwin Franklin.  Sutton, Darius and Leprinceton Burks are all admitted East Coast Crip gang members.

The suspects involved allegedly transported minors from the Inland Empire to Long Beach, and finally, to the North Hollywood section of Los Angeles for the purposes of prostitution.

On December 8, 2011, a search warrant was conducted at four residences for additional evidence by the Los Angeles Innocence Lost Task Force.  This is a multi-agency task force comprised of the FBI, LAPD, Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office, the United States Attorney’ Office and the Department of Homeland Security.

The arrests were the result of an ongoing investigation by the Innocence Lost Task Force in Los Angeles, in support of the FBI’s Innocence Lost National Initiative.  The task forces were formed to address the growing problem of commercial sexual exploitation of children through prostitution in the United States. Since its inception, the initiative has resulted in the development of 44 dedicated task forces and working groups throughout the United States, involving federal, state, and local law enforcement agencies. To date, these groups have worked successfully to rescue more than 1,800 children. Investigations have successfully led to the conviction of over 800 pimps, madams, and their associates who exploit children through prostitution. These convictions have resulted in lengthy sentences, including multiple life sentences, as well as the seizure of real property, vehicles, and monetary assets.  All of the victims in these crimes were under the age of 18.  The investigation is on-going.  

Anyone with further information regarding this matter is asked to call the Innocence Lost Task Force Hotline at 800-655-4095.  During non-business hours or on weekends, calls should be directed to 1-877-LAPD-24-7 (877-527-3247).  Anyone wishing to remain anonymous should call Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-TIPS 800-222-8477.  Tipsters may also contact Crime Stoppers by texting to phone number 274637 (C-R-I-M-E-S on most keypads) with a cell phone.  All text messages should begin with the letters “LAPD.”  Tipsters may also go to LAPDOnline.org, click on “webtips” and follow the prompts.