The first of five men charged in connection with a teenage prostitution ring in Fairfax County was sentenced on Friday to 10 years in prison, federal officials said.
Federal prosecutors had recommended that Michael Tavon Jefferies, 21, of Woodbridge, spend at least 25 years in prison for acting as a bodyguard for a gang-related prostution operation, but a judge ruled that Jefferies would spend 10 years in prison and another five on supervised release. Jefferies pleaded guilty to sex trafficking of a juvenile in April, and authorities said he was a member of the Underground Gangster Crips, a branch of the Crips gang based in Fairfax County.
Jefferies, according to court documents, paid for advertisements and hotel rooms for the teenage victims and would accompany them through apartment buildings as they sold sex door-to-door. Authorities have said the gang used violence, threats and drugs to keep the teenage girls in the prostitution ring.
Before the sentencing hearing Friday, prosecutors had emphasized that they were seeking strict sentences for all five men involved in the ring, and that Jefferies' sentence could influence those of his fellow gang members.