SANTA CLARA COUNTY —The Santa Clara County District Attorney’s office has leveled charges against a man holding a teen against her will and selling her for sex. According to Prosecutor Patrick Vanier, 33-year-old Stockton resident Anthony Wright Thomas Jr. faces three felony counts of sex trafficking and a variety of felony pimping and pandering charges after his arrest on November 9.
The suspect first came into contact with the victim after contacting her on Instagram. The suspect bought a ticket for the victim to take a train ride to Stockton, California. During the next few months the victim was beaten raped and sold for sex in multiple cities over several months.
The victim was taken to Las Vegas, Salt Lake City, Boise, Tri-Cities, WA., Portland, OR., Eugene, OR., Sacramento, Stockton, Los Angeles, and San Jose. The victim sent a text to the National Human Trafficking Hotline for help at “BeFree.” However, they were unable to locate the victim at that time.
“At the heart of this case is a terrified young woman, who was threatened, beaten and exploited for cash,” Prosecutor Patrick Vanier said.
Once in San Jose, she was able to contact law enforcement, triggering a response from the District Attorney’s Law Enforcement to Investigate Human Trafficking Task Force (LEIHT). They find, arrest and prosecute suspected pimps/abusers and rescue and provide support services for victims of human trafficking.
With assistance from the FBI and the Santa Clara County Sheriff’s Department, the LEIHT located the female victim at the Motel 6 on North First Street. The suspect was located at the Levi Stadium during a 49ers and Raiders game that same day.
The suspect is being held without bail and is expected to appear for a plea hearing on November 26, 2018. Should you or anyone you know need help, please contact the Anonymous Human Trafficking Hotline at 1-888-373-7888.