Washington, DC–(ENEWSPF)–October 30, 2015. Corderro Cody, 27, of Allentown, Pennsylvania, pleaded guilty today to charges arising from his operation of a sex trafficking enterprise that compelled multiple victims to prostitute for the defendant’s profit. Cody pleaded guilty to conspiracy to commit sex trafficking by force, fraud or coercion, conspiracy to transport individuals both intrastate and interstate for the purpose of prostitution, one count of sex trafficking of a minor and 12 counts of sex trafficking by force, fraud and coercion.
According to documents filed in the case and evidence presented in court during the plea hearing, from 2009 until the time of his arrest in 2014, the defendant, conspiring at various times with others, used false promises to recruit his victims into relationships with him, then used psychological manipulation, addictive drugs, sexual assaults and brutal violence to control and coerce them for purposes of prostituting them for his profit. Cody also denied a victim access to her child as another form of coercion and control.
As set forth in documents filed in the case, Cody recruited multiple women to prostitution, referring to his prostitution enterprise as the “program,” and advertised the women for commercial sex acts on Backpage.com. Cody transported them both within Pensnylvania and to other states to prostitute, and he controlled and retained virtually all of the prostitution proceeds. Cody also used physical force and violent beatings when the women did not adhere to the “program,” in order to maintain the women for continued commercial sexual acts at his direction.
“Human trafficking is a crime that deprives vulnerable individuals of their freedom and dignity,” said Principal Deputy Assistant Attorney General Vanita Gupta, head of the Civil Rights Division. “This defendant engaged in a concerted scheme of cruelty and brutality to compel and coerce his victims to sell their bodies for his profit. This disregard for their humanity is an affront to our values as a nation, and the Civil Rights Division is deeply committed to bringing traffickers to justice to vindicate the rights and dignity of survivors of human trafficking in all its forms.”
“A dozen victims of this sex trafficker have the opportunity to rebuild their lives and countless other potential victims will no longer fall prey to his abuse,” said Special Agent in Charge John Kelleghan of U.S Immigration and Customs Enforcement-Homeland Security Investigations (ICE-HSI) in Philadelphia. “This case is a result of the excellent relationship between HSI special agents and local police officers who continuously work together to root out this type of violent activity to keep communities safe.”
U.S. District Court Judge Edward G. Smith of the Eastern District of Pennsylvania scheduled a sentencing hearing for Jan. 29, 2016. Cody faces a mandatory minimum prison term of 15 years and a maximum of life, a fine of up to $3.75 million, a mandatory minimum of five years of supervised release and up to a lifetime of supervised release and a $1,500 special assessment.
The case was investigated by ICE-HSI and the Allentown Police Department. The case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Sherri A. Stephan of the Eastern District of Pennsylvania and Trial Attorney Anita Channapati of the Civil Rights Division’s Human Trafficking Prosecution Unit.