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CLE man accused of trafficking underage girls

Posted at 11:29 AM, Dec 16, 2015
and last updated 2015-12-16 11:29:43-05

U.S. Attorney Steven Dettelbach announced Wednesday the indictment of a Cleveland man accused of trafficking two underage girls.

According to the indictment, Ronnie L. Pratt took photos of the girls and posted them to classifieds website backpage.com. 

The postings were located by an agent conducting Crimes Against Children investigations assigned to the FBI’s Violent Crime Task Force. The posting advertised a “lovely college girl” who has a “thing for older men" but the posting showed photos of what looked like an underage girl. 

The agent made contact and arranged an undercover meeting. At that meeting, investigators determined the "lovely college girl" was actually 14 years old. Pratt was identified as her pimp. 

Agents seized a .38-caliber revolver in the car at the time of Pratt's arrest. He was taken into custody and charged on Nov. 6. 

The girl later told investigators that she had been working for Pratt since she was 13 and that he knew of her true age, according to the FBI.

Court documents show Pratt kept a portion of the money the girls were paid. 

According to the indictment, the illegal activity took place between July and November 2015. 

Pratt was indicted on two counts of human trafficking. The investigation is ongoing.