Case # 15WF1709
Date: February 25, 2016
MAN SENTENCED TO 10 YEARS AND FOUR MONTHS IN PRISON FOR TRAFFICKING, PIMPING, AND PANDERING FIVE WOMEN AND ONE MINOR GIRL FROM TEXAS TO ORANGE COUNTY
*Co-defendant in this case is scheduled for pre-trial
SANTA ANA, Calif. – A man was sentenced today to 10 years and four months in state prison for trafficking, pimping, and pandering five women and one minor girl from Texas to Orange County. Henry Ray Perry, 34, Houston, Texas, pleaded guilty to a court offer of one felony count each of human trafficking of one minor female, human trafficking of one adult woman, one count of pandering the minor female over 16 years old, one count of pandering the minor female over 16 years old, five felony counts of pimping, and five felony counts of pandering with sentencing enhancements for a prior federal prison conviction for transporting for prostitution in 2012 in Texas and serving a separate prison term of one year and more and not remaining free for a period of five years. The Honorable Robert R. Fitzgerald struck a sentencing enhancement for human trafficking of a minor involving force/fear/fraud/coercion over the objection of the People and offered the defendant a sentence of 10 years and four months in state prison.
Co-defendant Lynn Anthony Bishop, 46, Houston, Texas, is charged with one felony count each of human trafficking, pandering by procuring, human trafficking of a minor involving force/fear/fraud/coercion, pimping a minor, pandering with a minor over 16 years old by procuring, five felony counts of pimping, and five felony counts of pandering. Bishop faces a sentencing enhancement for a prior strike conviction for committing a robbery in 2000 in Harris County, Texas.
Circumstances of the Case
The defendants in this case are accused of being human traffickers/pimps who exploit women and for financial gain. Pimps often establish rigid rules that their victims are expected to follow including setting daily quotas that the victims are expected to fulfill. The victims are required to turn over all payment they receive for sex acts from sex purchasers to their pimp. Failure to follow these rules can result in physical and/or emotional abuse.
Bishop is accused of, and Perry was convicted of the following:
Between April 16, 2015, and April 30, 2015, Bishop and Perry traveled from Houston, Texas to Orange County. They are accused of trafficking six women in two vehicles, including one victim who was 17 years old, to have the victims solicit commercial sex. The defendants are accused of dropping the victims off in Santa Ana, Stanton, and cities in Los Angeles County to solicit commercial sex and collecting the proceeds they earned from performing commercial sex acts. Perry set daily quotas for each of the women and ordered them to turn over all the money they earned to the defendants.
Perry directed one of the victims to be responsible for recruiting other females to work as sex workers for the defendants and published advertisements of the victims soliciting commercial sex on a website known for prostitution. Perry instructed the woman about where to work and directed the women to perform commercial sex acts, including when one of the victims was menstruating. On one occasion, Perry spit in the face of one the victims and strangled her after finding out she returned to the motel room without the defendant’s permission and was requesting to return home.
This case was investigated over the course of two weeks by various law enforcement agencies including the Westminster Police Department, Orange County Human Trafficking Task Force (OCHTTF), Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) Innocence Lost National Initiative in Orange County, FBI Innocence Lost National Initiative in Houston, Houston Police Department, and Texas Department of Public Safety.
Members of OCHTTF and the Orange County District Attorney’s (OCDA) Office work proactively to protect women and minors from falling victim to commercial sexual exploitation. OCHTTF is a partnership between the Anaheim Police Department, California Highway Patrol, FBI, Huntington Beach Police Department, Irvine Police Department, OCDA, Orange County Sheriff’s Department, Santa Ana Police Department and community and non-profit partners.
Deputy District Attorney Daniel Varon of the HEAT Unit is prosecuting this case.
Proposition 35 and HEAT
In November 2012, California’s anti-human trafficking Proposition 35 (Prop 35) was enacted in California with 81 percent of the vote, and over 82 percent of the vote in Orange County, to increase the penalty for human trafficking, particularly in cases involving the trafficking of a minor by force.
A component of the OCHTTF is the OCDA’s Human Exploitation And Trafficking (HEAT) Unit, which targets perpetrators who sexually exploit and traffic women and underage girls for financial gain, including pimps, panderers, and human traffickers. The HEAT Unit uses a tactical plan called PERP: Prosecution, to bring justice for victims of human trafficking and hold perpetrators responsible using Prop 35; Education, to provide law enforcement training to properly handle human trafficking and pandering cases; Resources from public-private partnerships to raise public awareness about human trafficking and provide assistance to the victims; and Publicity, to inform the public and send a message to human traffickers that this crime cannot be perpetrated without suffering severe consequences.
Under the law, human trafficking is described as depriving or violating the personal liberty of another person with the intent to effect a violation of pimping or pandering. Pimping is described as knowingly deriving financial support in whole or in part from the proceeds of prostitution. Pandering is the act of persuading or procuring an individual to become a prostitute, or procuring and/or arranging for a person work in a house of prostitution.
Penal Code Section 236.1 defines:
(1) “Coercion” includes any scheme, plan, or pattern intended to cause a person to believe that failure to perform an act would result in serious harm to or physical restraint against any person; the abuse or threatened abuse of the legal process; debt bondage; or providing and facilitating the possession of any controlled substance to a person with the intent to impair the person’s judgment.
(2) “Commercial sex act” means sexual conduct on account of which anything of value is given or received by any person.
(3) “Deprivation or violation of the personal liberty of another” includes substantial and sustained restriction of another’s liberty accomplished through force, fear, fraud, deceit, coercion, violence, duress, menace, or threat of unlawful injury to the victim or to another person, under circumstances where the person receiving or apprehending the threat reasonably believes that it is likely that the person making the threat would carry it out.
(4) “Duress” includes a direct or implied threat of force, violence, danger, hardship, or retribution sufficient to cause a reasonable person to acquiesce in or perform an act which he or she would otherwise not have submitted to or performed; a direct or implied threat to destroy, conceal, remove, confiscate, or possess any actual or purported passport or immigration document of the victim; or knowingly destroying, concealing, removing, confiscating, or possessing any actual or purported passport or immigration document of the victim.
(5) “Forced labor or services” means labor or services that are performed or provided by a person and are obtained or maintained through force, fraud, duress, or coercion, or equivalent conduct that would reasonably overbear the will of the person.
(6) “Great bodily injury” means a significant or substantial physical injury.
(7) “Minor” means a person less than 18 years of age.
(8) “Serious harm” includes any harm, whether physical or nonphysical, including psychological, financial, or reputational harm, that is sufficiently serious, under all the surrounding circumstances, to compel a reasonable person of the same background and in the same circumstances to perform or to continue performing labor, services, or commercial sexual acts in order to avoid incurring that harm.
(i) The total circumstances, including the age of the victim, the relationship between the victim and the trafficker or agents of the trafficker, and any handicap or disability of the victim, shall be factors to consider in determining the presence of “deprivation or violation of the personal liberty of another,” “duress,” and “coercion” as described in this section.