According to a press release from the U.S. Attorney’s Office in the Western District of Wisconsin, 50 year old Beloit resident Cory Hereford was convinced on Thursday on charges of sex trafficking, conspiracy to commit sex trafficking, maintaining a property for the purposes of distributing and using controlled substances, and having committed sex trafficking of a minor while being a person previously convicted of a crime that required registering as a sex offender.
At the Thursday trial in Madison, the government presented evidence proving that he targeted vulnerable young women struggling with drug addiction. One of them was a 16 year old minor at the time. He enticed the victims with access to heroin, and sometimes threatened to withhold the drug to create withdrawal symptoms in the victims so they would participate in prostitution to receive the drug. He also threatened physical violence.
Janesville resident 30 year old Tonyiel Patree was a co-defendant in the case, as she recruited victims. She pled guilty to conspiracy to commit sex trafficking in July of 2021.
Further evidence showed that Hereford maintained a home on S. Franklin St. in Janesville for distributing and using controlled substances such as heroin and cocaine. The court will sentence Hereford on May 12.
The sex trafficking charge involving a minor carries a mandatory minimum penalty of 10 years and a maximum of life in federal prison. The charge of committing a crime involving a minor while a committed felon required to register as a sex offender has a mandatory 10-year penalty that federal law requires be served consecutive to any sentence imposed on the sex trafficking of a minor. The charge of maintaining a drug house has a maximum penalty of 20 years.
To report suspected human trafficking or to obtain resources for victims, call 888-373-7888, text “BeFree” to 233733, or live chat at www.HumanTraffickingHotline.org