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Ohio Task Force Seeks Tips From Survivors of Alleged Multistate Human Trafficker


(CLEVELAND) — A suspected human trafficker accused of advertising sex in a dozen states is facing 17 felony charges following an investigation by the Northeast Ohio Human Trafficking Task Force.
A Cuyahoga County grand jury recently indicted 31-year-old Deondre Inkton, of Cleveland, on charges of trafficking in persons, compelling prostitution, promoting prostitution, money laundering and possessing criminal tools.
The indictment accuses Inkton of trafficking eight women, but authorities believe there may be additional survivors who have not yet come forward. Those individuals are asked to contact the task force at (216) 443-6085.    
“This operation covered a vast stretch of territory, leading us to believe that more victims might still be out there,” Ohio Attorney General Dave Yost said. “We are grateful to the survivors who have already spoken to our task force, and we encourage other survivors to share what they know. Your tip could spare someone else the anguish of being trafficked.”
Cuyahoga County Prosecutor Michael C. O’Malley is prosecuting the case. He echoed Yost’s request for other victims to contact investigators.
“We are grateful for the work of the Northeast Ohio Human Trafficking Task Force and all of our law enforcement partners that worked together,” O’Malley said. “It is their work that led to Deondre Inkton’s prosecution. We believe Inkton may have done this to others. If you have any information regarding Inkton or if you are a survivor, please contact the Northeast Ohio Human Trafficking Task Force.”
Investigators tied Inkton to more than 4,000 sex advertisements in 12 states, including 2,000 in Ohio. Evidence shows that Inkton physically and sexually abused women to force them into prostitution, then received the proceeds of that exploitation via cash and electronic transfers. He allegedly transported his victims across the eastern United States and to Nevada to engage in prostitution. The crimes detailed in the indictment span roughly two years.

Inkton was arraigned on March 11 in Cuyahoga County Common Pleas Court.
A protégé of Inkton’s is also under indictment in a separate human trafficking case. Euclid resident Donte Cole was indicted late last year in federal court for allegedly trafficking an Ohio child for sex in Pennsylvania. The Northeast Ohio Human Trafficking Task Force assisted federal authorities with Cole’s case.
The Northeast Ohio Human Trafficking Task Force, formed under the Ohio Attorney General’s Organized Crime Investigations Commission, is led by the Cuyahoga County Sheriff’s Department. The task force consists of representatives from the Ashtabula County Sheriff's Office, Ashtabula Police Department, Cleveland Police Department, Conneaut Police Department, Cuyahoga County Prosecutor’s Office, East Cleveland Police Department, Geauga County Sheriff’s Office, Lake County Sheriff’s Office, MetroHealth Police Department, Middleburg Heights Police Department, North Olmsted Police Department, Ohio Investigative Unit, U.S. Department of Homeland Security Investigations, U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development – Office of Inspector General, U.S. Border Patrol, Warrensville Heights Police Department, Westlake Police Department and Willoughby Police Department.

Dominic Binkley: 614-728-4127


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