May 28, 2013
Federal law enforcement authorities arrested three men and took down a sex trafficking ring in Atlanta with ties to Tlaxcala, Mexico.
The three men, all from Tenancingo, Mexico, were charged with sex trafficking and harboring unauthorized immigrants. A fourth man, also from the Mexican state of Tlaxcala, was charged with encouraging and inducing unauthorized immigration.
Their names are: Arturo Rojas-Coyotl, Odilon Martinez-Rojas and Severiano Martinez-Rojas (who remains at-large), and Daniel Garcia-Tepal.
The men are all from the Mexican state of Tlaxcala, which is within a couple hours drive of Mexico City. It is there, in a town called Tenancingo, that the majority of Mexico’s sex traffickers originate. They are known as romeo traffickers, who lure young women with promises of love, marriage and a better life in the U.S. and then force them into prostitution.
Sex rings across the U.S., including in San Diego County, have been linked to these tiny towns in Mexico’s interior. Many that go on to trade women and girls in other cities across the country traveled by car or foot across the southwest border or through ports of entry in San Diego.
Read the U-T’s coverage of this multi-million dollar criminal enterprise out of Tlaxcala: An Inhumane Trade: human trafficking
According to the Federal Bureau of Investigation: Rojas-Coyotl and his uncles, both Martinez-Rojas’, forced three women into prostitution in Atlanta and Norcross between 2006 and 2008. Garcia-Tepal and Rojas-Coyotl also lured a fourth woman to the U.S. for purposes of sex trafficking between 2010 and 2013.
“Sex trafficking is a malicious crime whether the victims are American citizens or foreign nationals,” said Sally Quillian Yates. U.S. Attorney in Atlanta. “The defendants are charged with preying on young women from Mexico and Guatemala, smuggling them into the United States under false pretenses, and forcing them into prostitution. U.S. laws protect all trafficking victims, and we will prosecute those who engage in this practice.”