Corey "Magnificent" Davis – GUILTY sex trafficking

A New York man was sentenced Friday to more than 24 years in prison for sex trafficking a 12-year-old girl in a case authorities say was a modern form of slavery.

Corey “Magnificent” Davis, 36, was sentenced to 293 months in prison by U.S. District Judge Janet Hall after pleading guilty in March to a federal sex trafficking charge.

Prosecutors say Davis forced girls as young as 12 to work as dancers and prostitutes, confining them to a house in Queens, N.Y., while he lived a life of luxury that included driving a Mercedes and wearing expensive jewelry.

“The court cannot find words to describe the obscenity of Mr. Davis’ acts,” Hall said.

Davis, who represented himself after firing his third attorney, denied the allegations and had sought unsuccessfully to withdraw his earlier guilty plea. The charge he pleaded guilty to as part of a plea agreement involves one victim.

Davis said he had poor legal representation and the case was based on lies.

“I take full responsibility for living my life in a way completely contrary to the morals and values of a lot of people who showed me a better way by their example,” he said.

Davis rejected prosecutors’ comparison of slavery, saying that was offensive to slaves, who he called the true victims.

Davis lured victims to his operation with promises of modeling contracts and a glamorous lifestyle. Davis then forced them into a grueling schedule of dancing and performing at strip clubs in Connecticut, New York and New Jersey. When the clubs closed, Davis forced the victims to walk the streets until 4:00 or 5:00 A.M. propositioning customers. The indictment also alleged that Davis beat many of the victims to force them to work for him and that he also used physical abuse as punishment for disobeying the stringent rules he imposed to isolate and control them.

The victims earned up to $5,000 a night in these activities, which Davis confiscated and kept for himself. When arrested in December 2006, Davis was driving a Mercedes Benz, one of several cars that he owned, was wearing a watch appraised at $91,000, and was carrying approximately $30,000 in cash.

“Preying on vulnerable women and girls is not only abhorrent, it is illegal,” said Grace Chung Becker, Acting Assistant Attorney General for the Civil Rights Division. “The Justice Department remains committed to combating all forms of human trafficking, and prosecuting those who seek to profit by exploiting vulnerable members of society.”

Safe Harbor for Prostituted Children

There are no child prostitutes.

There are only prostituted children.

Children who are pressed, prodded and pummeled into selling sex, should be treated like victims — which is what they are — not like criminals. That’s the paradigm shift that a bill awaiting action on Gov. David Paterson’s desk would mandate. Paterson should sign it.

The “Safe Harbor” legislation would change the current practice of routinely arresting, prosecuting and jailing children — those under the age of 18 — for prostitution. Authorities would be required instead to provide them with state supervision and services such as shelter, crisis intervention and help toward a better life.

That would cost some money, which may be the rub. The state would need to provide safe houses and also some longer-term housing options to provide a way out of the sex trade for teens whose family situations make going home impossible. That should be done as cost-effectively as possibile — for instance by adapting current facilities to this new use — but it has to be done.

Children can’t legally consent to sex. That’s recognized when they’re trafficked across national borders and forced into sexual slavery. And it’s recognized when they’re abused by pedophiles. It should be no different when the child is American, the predator is a pimp and the pedophile is a “John.”