clear
Thursday May 26th, 2016 7:03AM

Sentencing Thursday in human trafficking case

By The Associated Press
JACKSON, Miss. (AP) A Gwinnett County man who pleaded guilty to transporting a woman across state lines for prostitution as part of a multistate kidnapping and human trafficking investigation was scheduled for sentencing Thursday afternoon in Mississippi.

Ruperto Moncillo Flores and another man were arrested June 27 after a woman walked into the Hattiesburg, Miss., Police Department and said she'd been abducted in Panama City Beach, Fla.

Authorities have said Flores had no knowledge of the abduction, but was asked to transport the woman to Louisiana for prostitution. The woman had been a witness in a prior human trafficking case, which led to numerous convictions in Tennessee and Kentucky.

Authorities say Flores, of Lawrenceville, Ga., was arrested in Mississippi when his van broke down before he made it to pick up the kidnapping victim.

Another woman with him at the time said Flores was taking her to Louisiana for prostitution, authorities say. He pleaded guilty in October to a violation of the federal Mann Act for transporting that woman.

Sentencing is scheduled to take place in U.S. District Court in Hattiesburg.

When Flores pleaded guilty, assistant U.S. Attorney Annette Williams said the victim heard her abductors call someone to take her to a ``house of prostitution'' in Baton Rouge, La.

Williams said at the time that the abduction started an investigation into a ``multistate prostitution ring and human trafficking organization.''

Feliciano-Francisco, also known as Uriel Castillo-Ochoa, is charged in U.S. District Court in Panama City, Fla., with kidnapping the former witness. He pleaded not guilty on Aug. 12 to five charges, including kidnapping and retaliating against a witness.

Authorities said the victim was in her yard in Florida when Feliciano-Francisco and an unidentified man forced her into a car and drove to Feliciano-Francisco's house in Hattiesburg. Investigators say Feliciano-Francisco sexually assaulted the victim and planned to force her to work as a prostitute.

The kidnapping victim escaped through a bathroom window that evening and went to the Hattiesburg Police Department about 6:30 p.m.

Feliciano-Francisco was arrested at the house that night. Flores was arrested on Interstate 59 in Jones County.
© Copyright 2016 AccessWDUN.com
All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed without permission.
Grass fire impacts rush hour traffic on 985
Rush hour traffic on I-985 was slowed by a grass fire Wednesay afternoon with one lane closed while firefighters fought the blaze.
10:19PM ( 1 year ago )
Judge denies motions to move, delay Tsarnaev trial
Lawyers for Boston Marathon bombing suspect Dzhokhar Tsarnaev asked a federal appeals court Wednesday to overturn a judge's decision to not move his upcoming trial out of state.
10:02PM ( 1 year ago )
Sheriff: Man shot 2 on I-85 because he wanted car
A 22-year-old man shot two people who stopped to give him a ride on Interstate 85 in South Carolina on Christmas Eve because he wanted their car to drive to Georgia, a sheriff said Wednesday.
5:21PM ( 1 year ago )
Local/State News
UPDATE: 11 states - including Georgia - sue over Obama's school transgender directive
Texas and 10 other states are suing the Obama administration over its directive to U.S. public schools to let transgender students use the bathrooms and locker rooms that match their gender identity
1:58AM ( 5 hours ago )
Teenage suspect in Flowery Branch armed robbery now in police custody
​Flowery Branch police say a 19-year-old suspect connected to an armed robbery that took place last week has turned himself in.
By AccessWDUN Staff
8:03PM ( 11 hours ago )
NTSB releases likely cause of fatal Gainesville plane crash in 2014
It was likely a loss of engine power caused by an undetected valve blockage that brought down a small plane, killing two people on board on Oct. 16, 2014.
4:19PM ( 14 hours ago )
UPDATE: Hunter finds human skull near Auburn; search for bones underway
​Sheriff's officials in Gwinnett County said they're searching an area near the town of Auburn for bones after a hunter found a skull.
1:00PM ( 18 hours ago )
Suwanee refinances bonds, saves $3 million
The Suwanee city council approved the refinancing of the city's open space bonds at their meeting Tuesday evening, a measure that will save the city $3 million.
12:22PM ( 18 hours ago )