UPDATE (July 2, 2019) — A judge sentenced Elijah Vines to 40 years in federal prison. He was also sentenced to lifetime supervised release and ordered to pay $10,000 in restitution to the victim.
INDIANAPOLIS, Ind.– An Indianapolis man was convicted this week for child sex trafficking charges.
Elijah Vines, 27, was convicted on Monday after a jury trial. He was found guilty of sex trafficking of a minor child, transportation of that child across state lines for the purpose of trafficking, and involvement in an organization that promoted prostitution. A mugshot of Vines was not made available.
“Vines coerced a vulnerable minor child into performing sex acts for money. In short, he profited through the exploitation of a child,” said United States Attorney Josh Minkler. “Holding this predator and others like him responsible took stalwart determination and cooperation of federal, state and local law enforcement. But it also involved community citizens standing up and proactively holding the line on behalf of our children. We cannot do it alone, and this case demonstrates again the resolve and fortitude of American citizens.”
Court documents show Vines trafficked the victim in Indianapolis motels in September 2016 after bringing her to the state from Ohio. Vines took suggestive photos of the child and posted an ad on Backpage.com offering her for sale.
According to Vines’ email account, a number of men contacted him for sex with the child in exchange for money.
The Justice Department seized the website in 2018, saying that it was well known to law enforcement as a website used to advertise commercial sex.
Vines faces up to life in prison.