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Pineville man sentenced to 35 years in human trafficking case, ordered to pay 900K restitution

Jail
Posted at 6:45 PM, May 19, 2023

A Pineville man who admitted to human trafficking for brownie business has been sentenced to thirty-five years for conspiracy to commit forced labor and transporting a minor for sexual activity.

Department of Justice Assistant Attorney General Kristen Clarke, United States Attorney Brandon B. Brown and Special Agent in Charge Douglas A. Williams, Jr. of the FBI New Orleans Field Office announced that a Louisiana man was sentenced today to 35 years in prison for conspiracy to commit forced labor and transporting a minor with intent to engage in criminal sexual activity. The defendant was also ordered to pay restitution of $979,800 to the victims.

Between June 2016 and May 2019, Darnell Fulton, 39, of Pineville, used violence, sexual abuse, withholding of food, degradation, and intimidation to coerce multiple minors to work for his brownie baking business and provide him the profits. The defendant required the victims to travel to as many as 20 to 30 locations a day, such as plazas, car dealerships, law firms, restaurants, and parking lots, to sell brownies. The victims worked late into the night either selling or baking the brownies and sold them during the day. In fact, the victims typically worked seven days a week with very few breaks and had to meet a daily sales quota the defendant set. The defendant regularly assaulted the victims because he was not satisfied with their daily work performance, especially if they did not meet his projected sales daily quota.

For example, the defendant frequently required the victims to stay in a push up or plank position for hours, and he often whipped them with a belt if they got out of proper form.
The defendant also made the minor victims perform sexual acts with him and transported them across state lines to engage in criminal sexual activity with him.

We reported on Fulton's guilty plea of the above crimes in the headline link below:

Pineville man admits to human trafficking for brownie business

Anyone who has information about human trafficking should report that information
to the National Human Trafficking Hotline toll-free at 1-888-373-7888, which is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

For more information about human trafficking, please visit www.humantraffickinghotline.org. Information on the Justice Department’s efforts to
combat human trafficking can be found at www.justice.gov/humantrafficking.