MAN AC­CUSED OF SEX TRAF­FICK­ING

The Kansas City Star - - Front Page - BY TONY RIZZO [email protected]­star.com Tony Rizzo: 816-234-4435, @triz­zkc

A Kansas City man has been ar­rested on charges of sex traf­fick­ing of a Mis­souri girl, 14, who had run away from home.

A Kansas City man called “Fatz” has been charged with the sex traf­fick­ing of a 14-yearold Mis­souri girl who had run away from home.

Twenty-four-year-old Cory Lavelle Smith, aka “Fatz,” was ar­rested Wed­nes­day af­ter a high-speed po­lice chase in cen­tral Kansas City.

The teen girl was with him, ac­cord­ing to doc­u­ments filed in U.S. Dis­trict Court in Kansas City.

Agents with the Depart­ment of Home­land Se­cu­rity be­gan in­ves­ti­gat­ing on Mon­day when they got a tip that the girl, who had ab­sconded from a drug treat­ment fa­cil­ity in Jef­fer­son City was be­ing used as a pros­ti­tute.

They learned that the girl, iden­ti­fied in court doc­u­ments as FV1, had been in­jured in a Blue Springs traf­fic crash on Dec. 13.

At the hospi­tal, she told a nurse that she had been hav­ing sex for money and had been phys­i­cally forced to have sex.

The court doc­u­ments don’t say whether that was re­ported to po­lice, but the girl had left the hospi­tal with­out her per­sonal ef­fects, in­clud­ing a cell­phone.

On Tues­day, agents ob­tained the phone from the hospi­tal and found that it had been used in a text con­ver­sa­tion with an­other per­son in Mis­sis­sippi.

They con­tacted an­other teen girl in Mis­sis­sippi, who told them she had been friends with FV1 be­fore leav­ing Kansas City and re­turn­ing home.

She gave the agents FV1’s new phone num­ber.

They then be­gan to “ping” the num­ber and traced it to the area of 35th Street and the Paseo.

While do­ing sur­veil­lance in the area Wed­nes­day, they spot­ted Smith, the girl and an­other per­son get into a ve­hi­cle. When the agents ap­proached, Smith drove off at a high rate of speed.

They were stopped at 39th Street and For­est Av­enue.

Smith al­legedly told the agents that he was tak­ing the girl to meet some­one for sex when they were stopped. He told them she had en­gaged in six “com­mer­cial sex acts” in the past week, ac­cord­ing to the al­le­ga­tions.

The girl told in­ves­ti­ga­tors Smith had been her pimp since Au­gust.

She said she told Smith she was 16 and that he “groomed her” into the sex trade.

“Smith pro­vided her with drugs, in­structed FV1 to lie to peo­ple about her young age, and used food de­pri­va­tion to gain com­pli­ance from FV1,” an agent re­ported in the court doc­u­ments.

He would lock her in their apart­ment at 35th and the Paseo when he left and kept most of the money she earned, she told the agents.

She es­ti­mated that he had taken her to per­form sex acts for money at least 10 times in the past week. Those trans­ac­tions oc­curred across the Kansas City area.

Agents noted that even while they were ques­tion­ing her, po­ten­tial cus­tomers were call­ing her cell­phone.

Smith made an ini­tial court ap­pear­ance Thurs­day and is be­ing held with­out bond pend­ing a Jan. 15 de­ten­tion hear­ing.

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