Memphis man convicted of child sex trafficking, fire offense - WMC Action News 5 - Memphis, Tennessee

Memphis man convicted of selling teen girl for sex

Maurice Mabon, photo courtesy Shelby County Jail. Maurice Mabon, photo courtesy Shelby County Jail.

(WMC-TV) A 23-year-old Memphis man was convicted of sex trafficking and a firearms offense last week in a case that was investigated by the FBI while working with the Shelby County Sheriff's Department.

Maurice Mabon was found guilty for child sex trafficking and conspiracy to commit child sex trafficking for his role in advertising a 15-year-old girl for prostitution on the website backpage.com.

According to the press release, he was also found guilty of being a felon in possession of ammunition.

The evidence at trial showed that Mabon posted the advertisement to the website after taking numerous indecent photographs of the teenage victim.

Mabon and his co-defendants then drove the 15-year-old to an address provided by an individual responding to the advertisement.  

A suspicious neighbor contacted the Shelby County Sheriff's Department and deputies intervened.

A later search of Mabon's home led to the discovery of a massive stock of ammunition -
mostly for hand pistols including 25 live rounds of .380 ammunition.

As a previously-convicted felon, Mabon was prohibited from possessing any ammunition by federal law.

Mabon faces a mandatory minimum sentence of 10 years in prison and faces a maximum penalty of life in prison.  He will be sentenced on July 13, 2012, by Chief U.S. District Judge Jon Phipps McCalla.  

Mabon's co-defendants, Arieke Lester and Chauntta Lewis, pleaded guilty to related charges last week. Lester and Lewis will also be sentenced this summer and face up to life in prison.

This case was led by U.S. Attorneys' Offices and the Criminal Division's Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section - and was brought as part of Project Safe Childhood, a nationwide initiative to combat the growing epidemic of child sexual exploitation and abuse

"The cruel exploitation of children will not be tolerated, and the FBI, along with our law enforcement partners, is committed to targeting those who prey on innocent juveniles," said Special Agent in Charge Aaron T. Ford of the FBI's Memphis Field Office.

"This conviction is a message to those who would seek to take part in human trafficking or commercial sex trafficking, that you will be investigated brought to justice and held accountable," he said.

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