Attorney General Pam Bondi today announced that known gang member and human trafficker, Montavious Rakeem Postell, 22, of Orlando, entered a plea of guilty to human trafficking for commercial sexual activity of a child under the age of 18 and lewd or lascivious battery. He was subsequently sentenced to nine years in federal prison.
Circuit Court Judge Tim Shea in Orange County sentenced him to nine years in prison followed by five years of supervised sex offender probation. This prosecution by the State Attorney General's Office follows a lengthy investigation and arrest by the Polk County Sheriff's Office with assistance from the Orange County Sheriff’s Office, the Tampa Police Department, and the Office of Statewide Prosecution.
The investigation into Postell, also known as King, began after his co-defendant, Michael Kempfer, and a 15-year-old victim were arrested during an undercover prostitution sting operation. Detectives discovered the child was a victim of human trafficking and was being prostituted by Postell.
"This young girl, who should have been going to the movies with friends and practicing driving, was instead being coerced into prostitution. No child should suffer sexual slavery, and Polk County Sheriff Grady Judd, partnering law enforcement agencies, and The Attorney General's Office of Statewide Prosecution have helped save this girl from a lifetime of slavery and put this horrific criminal behind bars," stated Attorney General Pam Bondi.
"Montavious Postell is going to prison where he belongs. This could not have happened without the hard work and dedication of our detectives and that of the prosecutors with Attorney General Pam Bondi’s Office of Statewide Prosecution. There are many who might argue that prostitution is a ‘victimless crime.’ They would be wrong. During the 2013 prostitution investigation, our detectives discovered Postell’s juvenile victim - a victim he forced into prostitute as a sex slave. This young girl was given drugs, physically beaten and sexually abused, and—because she was too young to even drive—she was driven around and forced to commit lewd acts with adult men. This victim will tell you, prostitution is not a victimless crime," Polk County Sheriff Grady Judd.
In May 2013, the Polk County Sheriff’s Office conducted an extensive undercover prostitution sting, which resulted in more than 90 arrests. During this time, detectives discovered the human trafficking situation with the girl. He controlled the young girl with the threat of physical violence and drugs. The girl, not old enough to drive at the time, was driven to locations and coerced into prostitution.
According to the National Human Trafficking Resource Center, there are 27 million people enslaved worldwide. In 2011, the National Human Trafficking Resource Center ranked Florida third in the number of calls received by the center’s human trafficking hotline. Victims of human trafficking include children, women and men who are subjected to sexual exploitation or forced labor through physical force, fraud or coercion.