A Pittsburg, California man who forced women into sex trafficking against their will be eligible for parole after he serves 287 years in San Quentin prison.
Derrick Harper, 39 was convicted of conspiracy, human trafficking, murder, kidnapping for extortion, aiding and abetting rapes and other offenses according to the East Bay Times. He was charged for the crimes in 2013, along with two other men, Roy Gordon, 45, and Eric “ Beman, 49. Gordon and Beman have accepted plea deals and have not been sentenced yet. The trio forced women, one of which was 18, into sex trafficking.
Many women, including several former sex workers, testified against Harper.
“These women were determined not to continue to be victimized and deserve to be commended for their strength and bravery in coming forward,” Mary Knox, senior deputy district attorney said.
In one case, a woman was held against her will and forced into prostitution. In another, Harper was convicted of ordering three of his friends to rape a sex worker for breaking one of Harper’s rules. A woman’s hair was removed with a butcher knife as another form of punishment, according to a East Bay Times report. Another was burned with a hot iron, leaving a scar on her leg, according to Mercury News. Any women that attempted to run away from the situation were kidnapped at gunpoint and forced to remain as sex trafficking victims. The crimes took place between 2006 to 2013, according to the Associated Press.
Harper also murdered 35-year-old Jesse Saucedo a decade ago.
[Photo: City of Pittsburg]