The man federal prosecutors say led a gang-related teenage prostitution ring in Fairfax County for six years pleaded guilty Tuesday in Alexandria's U.S. District Court.
Justin Strom, 26, pleaded guilty to one count of sexual trafficking of a juvenile. A federal judge dropped nine additional charges as part of a plea deal with prosecutors. Strom still faces the possibility of life in prison, with a minimum sentence of 10 years.
Strom is the fifth defendant indicted in connection with the prostitution ring to plead guilty, prosecutors said.
Strom, prosecutors said, was the ringleader of the group - all members of the Underground Gangster Crips, a Fairfax-based street gang - who lured at least eight teenage girls into prostitution. Prosecutors said in court Tuesday that Strom used Internet sites like Facebook, MySpace and Craigslist to entice girls into prostitution. He also posted ads on websites to solicit customers for the girls, prosecutors said.
Clad in a green prison jumpsuit, Strom was soft-spoken and subdued in court on Tuesday. He told the judge he'd graduated from high school and has been diagnosed twice with depression, but also added he has been previously convicted in a string of misdemeanors and felonies.