Wednesday, January 23, 2019
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The Tunica Times • P.O. Box 308/986 Magnolia Street, Tunica, MS 38676

Man convicted of human trafficking

OXFORD, Miss. – A federal jury in U.S. District Court in Oxford, Mississippi, found Raymorris Asencio, 31, of Hattiesburg, Mississippi, guilty of human trafficking and transporting a minor across state lines to engage in prostitution.

The announcement was made last week by U.S. Attorney William C. Lamar and Special Agent in Charge Christopher Freeze, Federal Bureau of Investigation. During the trial, the jury heard testimony from the victim and local citizens who observed the minor and reported their concerns to police. FBI agents and task force officers from Oxford, Hattiesburg, and Baton Rouge, Louisiana rescued the minor from a hotel room in Baton Rouge in February 2017.

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U.S. District Judge Glen H. Davidson presided over the trial and will sentence Asencio at a later date. Asencio faces possible penalties of not less than 10 years and up to life imprisonment, fines of up to $250,000, and post-imprisonment terms of supervision of not less than 5 years.

Lamar said, “Combatting human trafficking is a top priority for the Department of Justice and our office....I want to thank the private citizens in Oxford who noticed the minor and Asencio and notified the Oxford Police Department of their concerns for the minor’s safety.

Assistant United States Attorneys Paul Roberts and Michael Hallock prosecuted the case for the United States. The case was investigated by the FBI Jackson Division’s Child Exploitation Task Force, which is made up of agents from the FBI and the Mississippi Attorney General’s Office and officers from the Prentiss County Sheriff’s Office and Southaven Police Department.

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