A federal jury today convicted a Tacoma man of trafficking women and girls for sex.
Alexander Walls, 27, faces a possible life prison term when sentenced March 1, the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Seattle reported.
Jurors deliberated for about three hours following a 13-day trial before convicting Walls of conspiracy to transport a juvenile for prostitution, interstate transportation of a child for prostitution, witness tampering, conspiracy to engage in sex trafficking by force, fraud or coercion and three counts of sex trafficking by force, fraud or coercion.
Federal prosecutors argued Walls recruited women and girls to work for him as prostitutes in Pierce County and advertised their services online at sites including Backpage.com and Craigslist. He arranged for one juvenile to travel from Chicago to Tacoma to work for him, according to court records. Walls assaulted the women if they didn’t follow his rules, federal prosecutors said.
He and co-defendant Reginald Irvin were arrested in the summer of 2011. Irvin pleaded guilty in October, and both the prosecution and defense will recommend a sentence of 15 years in prison when Irvin is sentenced in January.
The case was investigated by the Tacoma Police Department, Lakewood Police Department, and the FBI’s Innocence Lost Task Force.