A New Jersey man will serve up to 36 years in prison for a human-trafficking ring he operated in Lancaster County, enticing the victims with drugs and only a small fraction of the profits.
Dominic Roach was convicted of all counts earlier this year during what was the first trafficking trial in Lancaster County history.
Lancaster County Judge Donald Totaro recently sentenced Roach to 18 to 36 years regarding the 18 charges filed by East Lampeter Township police.
Assistant District Attorney Karen Mansfield said at sentencing that Roach was involved in “modern-day slavery,” taking advantage of two women whom were addicted to drugs.
Roach spent more than $26,000 on hotels, most on and around Lincoln Highway East, which Judge Totaro said, illustrates the profit level of the operation.
The jury determined Roach trafficked the women, from New Jersey, to Lancaster County where they performed sex acts for money – with Roach profiting from the payments.
Also, Roach provided the two victims with controlled substances, and a portion of the profits, so they would continue working for him.
It was the first trial in Lancaster County on charges of trafficking in individuals and involuntary servitude.
There are proactive measures ongoing in Lancaster County to specifically target human trafficking.
“Human trafficking is quite simply despicable and those who commit these acts are predators on so many levels,” District Attorney Craig Stedman said this week, noting prosecution of traffickers is a priority. “Hopefully, this conviction and sentence will send a message that human trafficking will not be tolerated in Lancaster County.”
Stedman added: “Because the victims are often reluctant to testify, these cases are particularly difficult to investigate and prosecute. I commend the East Lampeter Township Police Department and ADA Mansfield for the work they did.”
Among the evidence presented at trial:
- At least seven hotels on and around Route 30 (Lincoln Highway East) were utilized in the operation.
- Those room rentals totaled over $26,000.
- A vehicle was rented weekly so Roach could travel from New Jersey to Lancaster County to collect the payments.
- Roach received half of the payments, and he made the women pay half of the hotel fees and for the drugs he supplied them.
- When Roach was arrested, he had $1,073 cash and a credit card belonging to one of the victims.
East Lampeter Township police Detective Christopher Jones filed charges and testified several times at trial.
While ordering sentence, Judge Totaro said he considered Roach’s extensive criminal history, calling him a danger to society.
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