News From the Border

Providing the news from a different front but from a war that we must win as well! I recognize the poverty and desperate conditions that many Latinos live in. We, as the USA, have a responsibility to do as much as we can to reach out to aid and assist spiritually with the Gospel and naturally with training, technology and resources. But poverty gives no one the right to break the laws of another sovereign nation.

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Texas man pleads guilty in sex trafficking case

© 2008 The Associated Press

SAN ANTONIO — A 48-year-old San Antonio man will likely spend 10 years in prison after pleading guilty in a sex trafficking case involving teenage girls from Mexico, officials said.

Timothy Michael Gereb pleaded guilty Monday to transporting undocumented immigrants for commercial advantage and private financial gain, and a separate count of sexual trafficking of a minor.

The sexual trafficking charge carries a maximum sentence of life in prison, but Gereb's guilty plea means he will likely serve 10 years. U.S. District Judge Xavier Rodriguez set sentencing for March 12.

"The risk was just too high to go to trial," said Mike McCrum, one of his lawyers.

As part of his plea, Gereb acknowledged that in May 2007 he and four other defendants conspired to bring in girls from Mexico to work as "escorts," according to a U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement investigation.

The girls were smuggled into the country from Nuevo Laredo and brought to the San Antonio area. Prosecutors said Gereb and the other defendants were setting up a house for prostitution, and that the girls were sexual slaves.

Isabel Ochoa, 59, and her daughters Consuelo Pilar Ochoa, 32, and Maria De Jesus Ochoa, 29, pleaded guilty in October to transporting or harboring the teen girls.

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