Texas Tribune reporters talked to three convicted traffickers to try to understand the power they wield over victims and the attraction of what they call "the lifestyle." Here they are in their own words. When it comes to punishing the sex traffickers who exploit Texas kids, state leaders are unforgiving: Their crimes are "vile," "heinous," "despicable," "unconscionable." Texas Tribune reporters talked to three convicted traffickers to try to understand the power they wield over victims and the attraction of what they call "the lifestyle." They explained how vulnerable kids end up in the sex trade and how the business works. The girls see me so much in the room that they start to friend me. Don't let nobody hurt them while they do what they do. Anthony Harris, 30, who is serving five years for compelling prostitution of a minor at a state prison in Huntsville, Texas, said working as a pimp doesn’t feel like a business — ”it feels like family.” Callie Richmond for The Texas Tribune How did you recruit girls to sell sex? A.: If you meet a female, she don't got no family, she don't got nowhere to stay, but you got a little bit of money, you doing for her, you putting a roof over her head, feeding her ... Johnson: If it's a new girl trying to get on my team, I have sex with them first because I know I can get in they head. And then after that, they just start giving me whatever I need. Johnson still maintains her innocence in that case, though she spoke openly about her experience as a pimp who led a group of eight adult women in Dallas. A., 25, is serving a life sentence for pimping out a 15-year-old runaway in San Antonio and murdering her boyfriend, crimes committed when he was 20. I kind of started getting in the streets in Dallas. Harris: A lot of people always think that somebody's making them do it or forcing them to do it. Anthony Harris, 30, is serving a five-year prison sentence in Huntsville for a 2014 charge of compelling a minor into prostitution. He would only consent to being identified by his initials, and he spoke in general terms about pimping — not about his own experiences. I knew I always had pimping stuff in me, but I didn't call it that.
She exposed herself and he fondled her, according to the news release.“Sex-trafficking ranges from organized rings to the kind of activities we have charged here,” Hennepin County Attorney Mike Freeman said in the news release. Boyd took advantage of a young girl and her desire for cigarettes in order to have sexual contacts and then helped his friends do the same.According to the news release, Boyd was a clerk at a Minnetonka gas station in December when a 14-year-old girl came into the store and asked to buy cigarettes.Prosecutors say Boyd noticed she was underage but said he would sell her cigarettes if she would expose her breasts.""Mmhmm," the caller replied."And somebody threatened to kill you if you leave?" the shocked dispatcher asked."Mmhmm," the woman confirmed.