Nigerian U.S policeman pleads guilty to sex trafficking
A 29-year-old Nigerian U.S policeman identified as, Chukwuemeka Ekwonna, has pleaded guilty to sex trafficking teenage girls.
The Nigerian man, who is a former D.C. police officer, was convicted in federal court, on Tuesday, on charges he solicited two underage teenage girls online and then paid them for sex.
Chukwuemeka Ekwonna pleaded guilty to two counts of sex trafficking a minor, while eight other counts including illegal use of a firearm and robbery were dropped as part of a deal with prosecutors, court records show.
Under the terms of the deal, Ekwonna faces between 10 and 20 years in prison when he is sentenced on May 10, 2019.
Ekwonna admitted to creating an account on the social media site, Tagged, in 2010, and then sending messages to many users, offering to pay them to engage in specific sex acts.
Ekwonna exchanged dozens of messages with a 14-year-old girl and a 15-year-old girl, before meeting both for sex in the back of his car or at motel rooms in the Annapolis area on multiple occasions.
When he was initially charged, the U.S. attorney’s office for the District of Maryland alleged Ekwonna pointed a gun at the 15-year-old girl and demanded she return the money he had just paid her during one of their encounters in January 2017.
Ekwonna had been on the force for roughly 14 months and was fired in April. He applied for the job with the D.C. police while he was facing a lawsuit for allegedly beating an inmate at the D.C. jail, where he previously held a job.
The lawsuit was eventually settled for $20,000. D.C. Police Chief Peter Newsham said, last year, that the department was reviewing how Ekwonna was hired with the lawsuit pending.