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Date: 11-27-2020

Case Style:

United States of America v. Devin L. Ashford

Case Number: 4:19-cr-03030-JMG-CRZ

Judge: John M. Gerrard

Court: United States District Court for the District of Nebraska (Lancaster County)

Plaintiff's Attorney: United States District Attorney’s Office, Lincoln, Nebraska

Defendant's Attorney:

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Description: Lincoln, Nebraska sex trafficking criminal defense lawyer represented defendant charged with Sex Trafficking of a Minor; Sex Trafficking by Force, Fraud, or Coercion; Production of Child Pornography; and Interstate Transportation for Prostitution.

Devin L. Ashford, 33, of Lincoln, Nebraska, was found guilty by a jury of Sex Trafficking of a Minor; Sex Trafficking by Force, Fraud, or Coercion; Production of Child Pornography; and Interstate Transportation for Prostitution. Chief United States District Judge John M. Gerrard sentenced Ashford to 564 months (47 years) in federal prison. After his release from prison, Ashford will begin a 10-year term of supervised release.

When pronouncing sentence, Chief Judge Gerrard noted that he was particularly concerned with deterrence in this case, both specific deterrence to Ashford and general deterrence, stating, “For those thinking that pimping is a lifestyle, there will be a cost for doing business.” Here that cost was forty-seven years in federal prison. Chief Judge Gerrard also specifically recognized the powerful testimony of the victims at trial, which he found to be “compelling” and “horrendous” accounts of their experiences as sex trafficking victims.

Numerous victims testified at trial that Ashford beat, starved, and pushed cocaine on them to get them to provide sexual services. Ashford recruited minors to engage in commercial sex acts so that he could get the financial proceeds from those acts. The evidence at trial showed that at least three of the minors were children who had either run away from home or were in the foster care system when Ashford targeted them for his trafficking operation. Ashford was also convicted of producing child pornography when he enticed one of his victims to send sexually explicit photos of herself.

This case was brought as part of Project Safe Childhood, a nationwide initiative to combat the growing epidemic of child sexual exploitation and abuse launched in May 2006 by the Department of Justice. Led by United States Attorneys’ Offices and the Criminal Division's Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section (CEOS), Project Safe Childhood marshals federal, state and local resources to better locate, apprehend and prosecute individuals who exploit children via the Internet, as well as to identify and rescue victims. For more information about Project Safe Childhood, please visit

This case was investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the Lincoln Police Department.

18:1591(a)(1), (b)(2) and (c) SEX TRAFFICKING OF A MINOR




Outcome: Defendant was sentenced to 564 months in prison. Defendant was found guilty on Counts I, II, III, and IV of the Indictment after a plea of not guilty and was committed to the custody of Bureau of Prisons for 240 months as to Count I and 240 months as to Count III, with Count III to be served consecutively to Count I, 84 months as to Count IV, said term to run consecutively to Counts I and III, and 180 months as to Count II, said term to run concurrently with Counts I, III, and IV; 10 years supervised release with special conditions as to Counts I, II, III, and IV, said terms to run concurrently with each other; $400 Special Assessment.

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