The man behind a teenage prostitution ring in Tea will spend at least 15 years behind bars.
This prostitution ring scandal has been going on for almost a year. But now 27-year-old Brandon Quincy Thompson has struck a deal with federal prosecutors.
According to court paperwork obtained by Action News, Brandon Thompson was in court on Tuesday November 16th for a change of plea hearing. He is now pleading guilty to two charges.
According to the paperwork Thompson admits he intentionally recruited, enticed, harbored, and transported people under the age of 18, to engage in a commercial sex act. It also says Thompson received money from those acts. The paperwork also says at least 10 underage girls were involved in this prostitution ring.
The paperwork also says Thompson admits that between February 1st 2010 and April 6th 2010, Thompson tried to persuade another person to murder someone who was intending to testify against Thompson in this case.
By striking this plea agreement with federal prosecutors Thompson plead guilty to one count of sex trafficking of a child and one count of solicitation to murder a federal witness. The plea agreement will drop the rest of the charges against him. Thompson will spend at least 15 years behind bars but he could face as much as life in prison.
The other person who is now admitting to working with Thompson in this prostitution ring is Megan Marie Hayes. She is also entering a plea agreement with federal prosecutors.
In court paperwork,filed on November 8th, Hayes admits that on or about April 1st 2009 until July of 2009 she knowingly conspired with Thompson to harbor, transport, and maintain an underage person to engage in a commercial sex act. In the paperwork Hayes also admits she registered and paid for a hotel room intending that one of the underage girls would be using the room to engage in a commercial sex act.
When Hayes next appears in court she will plead guilty to conspiracy to commit sex trafficking according to the plea agreement. That charge carries a maximum sentence of life in prison but part of the plea agreement is that prosecutors agreed not to recommend more than five years behind bars.
This whole incident first came to light in July of 2009 when someone who knew about the operation contacted the Tea police department and told them what they believed was happening in town. Authorities say the couple was running the sex ring out of a house in the 500 block of East Brian Street in Tea. Investigators say they recruited teenage girls to be used in an illegal money making scheme, where the girls would be taken to various locations to have sex with men for money. Thompson advertised the prostitution services on a website, 'backpage.com.' Some of the interactions reportedly happened at the Motel 6 on Russell Avenue in Sioux Falls. Hayes and Thompson were arrested near the home on Brian Street back on Friday November 20th 2009.
Police were familiar with Brandon Thompson who went by four different aliases. Kadafi, Hanee Rashid King, Hanee Rasid King, and Terence Maceo Clay Junior. Thompson had two arrest warrants, when he was taken into custody, pending in Clay County, Minnesota dating back to 2006. One for second degree assault the other for making terroristic threats.
Brandon Quincy Thompson will be sentenced on Monday March 28th 2011 at 9:00 A.M. Megan Marie Hayes is expected for a change of plea hearing on Thursday, November 18th, at 9:00 A.M. Stick with Action News on this developing story.
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