SPARTANBURG, SC (FOX Carolina) –
The Spartanburg County Sheriff’s Office said they have made seven arrests in a human trafficking investigation.
Lt. Kevin Bobo said a teenage female runaway was recovered by investigators with the Special Victims Unit in early February.
Bobo said the teen told deputies she had been the victim of forced prostitution.
The girl also identified several other people that may have been victimized by the same group of people, according to Bobo.
Bobo said three other victims were identified, recovered and interviewed over the course of a three-month investigation.
According to the sheriff’s office, the suspects created profile pages for the victims on a classified advertisement website to promote prostitution.
The Department of Homeland Security was called in March and began helping with the investigation after they learned one of the victims had been trafficked over state lines.
Bobo said 14 arrest warrants for promoting the prostitution of a minor were obtained against seven people in the case. He said four of the seven were captured during an operation last Tuesday and two more of the suspects were found in a motel in Athens, GA. The last suspect was arrested Monday night in Gaffney.
The suspects were identified as Michael Gary Wayne Riddle, Dylan Lynn Patterson, Michael Donnell Whitaker, D’Shawn Cortez Pitts, Makalya Rose Bradford, Miracle Lashay Williams, Brandon Lamar Littlejohn.