United States Attorney Matthew D. Krueger has announced that Christopher L. Childs (age 45) of Hartford, Wisconsin, appeared in federal court today for an arraignment on multiple offenses related to sex trafficking.
U.S. Attorney Krueger explained that earlier this week, a grand jury returned a three-count indictment against Childs. Count One alleges that beginning before 2009 and continuing through his arrest on March 29, 2018, Childs conspired with others to use force, fraud, and coercion to cause victims to engage in commercial sex acts, in violation of Title 18, United States Code, Section 1594. Count Two and Count Three, in turn, allege that Childs used force, fraud, and coercion to cause specific victims to engage in commercial sex acts, in violation of Title 18, United States Code, Sections 1591(a)(1) & 1591(b)(1).
If convicted of any of the counts, Childs faces up to life in prison. If convicted of Count Two or Count Three, Childs would face a mandatory minimum sentence of 15 years in federal prison and up to a life term of supervised release following any term of imprisonment. Childs also faces a fine of up to $250,000 per count.
U.S. Attorney Krueger commented, “The United States Attorney’s Office is dedicated to working with our federal, state, and local partners to prosecute these offenses vigorously and seek justice for the victims of human trafficking.” United States Krueger specifically commended the victims in this case for speaking out and helping to ensure that additional women do not become victims of violent sex trafficking by this defendant.
This case was investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the United States Department of Labor’s Office of Inspector General, the Internal Revenue Service, the Dodge County Sheriff’s Office, the Hartford Police Department, the Racine Police Department, the Department of Homeland Security, the Milwaukee Police Department, and the Wisconsin Department of Justice’s Division of Criminal Investigation.
The case has been assigned to Assistant United States Attorneys Erica J. Lounsberry and Richard G. Frohling for prosecution.
The public is cautioned that an indictment is merely a formal charge that a defendant has committed one or more violations of federal law, and every defendant is presumed innocent unless, and until, proven guilty.
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