Las Vegas, Nevada - A North Las Vegas resident made his initial appearance, January 7, after being charged in a 15-count indictment for allegedly committing, among other crimes, sex trafficking of children and tampering with a witness, announced United States Attorney Nicholas A. Trutanich for the District of Nevada.
“Sex trafficking is one of the most devastating crimes, especially when vulnerable child victims are exploited,” said U.S. Attorney Trutanich. “January is Human Trafficking Prevention Month, and this case exemplifies the U.S. Attorney’s Office’s commitment to working with our law enforcement partners to bring justice to perpetrators.”
Jacques Anton Lanier, also known as John Dupree, was indicated by a Grand Jury on December 31, 2019, on eight counts of coercion and enticement, four counts of sex trafficking of children, one count of traveling interstate with intent to engage in illicit sexual conduct, one count of transfer of obscene material to a minor, and one count of tampering with a witness. Lanier appeared today before United States Magistrate Judge Daniel J. Albregts. A jury trial is scheduled for March 9, 2020, before United States District Judge Gloria M. Navarro.
According to allegations contained in the indictment, beginning in April 2017 through December 2017, Lanier coerced, enticed, and persuaded eight females under the age of 18 years old to engage in prostitution and sexual activities for which Lanier could be charged with a criminal offense. He recruited four of those victims to engage in a commercial sex act. Lanier also traveled across state lines to engage in illicit sexual conduct and transferred obscene matter to a victim under the age of 16 years old. In addition, Lanier is charged with tampering with a victim through intimidation, threats, and corruptly persuading that victim to evade legal process — and to recant a prior statement made to law enforcement — between April 2018 and March 2019.
An indictment is merely an allegation, and the defendant is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt in a court of law.
The case was investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation, Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department, and North Las Vegas Police Department and is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Bianca R. Pucci.
This investigation is part of Project Safe Childhood, a nationwide initiative to combat the growing epidemic of child sexual exploitation and abuse launched in May 2006 by the Department of Justice. Led by the U.S. Attorneys’ Offices and the Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section, Project Safe Childhood marshals federal, state, and local resources to better locate, apprehend, and prosecute individuals who exploit children via the Internet, as well as to identify and rescue victims.