California

2 Valley residents sentenced to County Jail in SLO sex-trafficking case

Two Manteca residents sentenced to County Jail in SLO sex-trafficking case

A man and a woman from Mantica, California, were sentenced to County Jail in San Luis Obispo Superior Court on Wednesday for felony kidnapping in a 2015 sex-trafficking case.
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A man and a woman from Mantica, California, were sentenced to County Jail in San Luis Obispo Superior Court on Wednesday for felony kidnapping in a 2015 sex-trafficking case.

Two co-defendants in a San Luis Obispo sex-trafficking case were sentenced to about a year in County Jail on Wednesday after pleading no contest in April to felony kidnapping.

Nikko Anaya, 20, and Brianna Morales, 24, both of Manteca, initially faced felony charges of human trafficking of a minor for sex as well as dissuading a witness. Those charges were dropped in favor of the kidnapping charge.

Then-16-year-old Anaya prostituted a 15-year-old — his girlfriend, according to a police report — to as many as 20 men over a six-day period in July 2015 before the girl managed to call her father, who directed San Luis Obispo police to a motel on the 1600 block of Monterey Street.

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Nikko Anaya, 20, is taken into custody after sentencing, at left is attorney Robert Sanger. Anaya, of Manteca, was sentenced Wednesday to 364 days in San Luis Obispo County Jail. Though initially charged with felony human trafficking of a minor for sex, two defendants agreed to plead no contest to a felony kidnapping charge in April. David Middlecamp dmiddlecamp@thetribunenews.com

“This situation has haunted me almost five years,” the victim, now 19, said in a written statement read in open court by an employee of the District Attorney’s Office’s Victim Witness Assistance Center.

The victim wrote that she remains troubled by the “permanent damage that has been done to me mentally and physically;” since the crimes, she’s had to switch schools, move to different cities and has lost friends.

She wrote that has had her car defaced with the words “snitch” and “prostitute” since news of the case broke.

“I hope to gain a voice back that was taken from me,” she wrote.

Morales and Anaya were two of four defendants in the case; the cases against Fabio Bettencourt Silveira, 24, and Elijah Joel Wolfson, 22, have since been transferred to San Joaquin and Stanislaus counties, respectively, and their status wasn’t immediately known Wednesday.

Neither Anaya nor Morales elected to make a statement before Superior Court Judge Jacquelyn Duffy, who also prohibited the two from having any contact with the victim or the other co-defendants. Each will pay the victim at least $2,000 in restitution, though more restitution could be sought.

Both defendants were sentenced to 364 days in San Luis Obispo County Jail, though they will likely serve less than half of that time.

Anaya was taken immediately into custody following the hearing to begin his sentence. Morales will surrender to County Jail next month due to a family matter.

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Brianna Morales, 24, Manteca, was sentenced Wednesday to 364 days in San Luis Obispo County Jail. Though initially charged with felony human trafficking of a minor for sex, two defendants agreed to plead no contest to a felony kidnapping charge in April. David Middlecamp dmiddlecamp@thetribunenews.com

Reports filed by the San Luis Obispo Police Department showed that the victim, also from Manteca, told investigators she met Anaya on Instagram and agreed to go on a trip with him to Santa Cruz, according to Tribune reporting at the time. They reportedly met with Morales and Wolfson there.

According to the reports, Anaya paid for the girl’s meals, and at a hotel told the girl that because he paid for dinner, she owed him. Anaya told her a man would soon knock on the door, he said, and she would have sex with him for $180.

After that occurred, she said, she began to freak out, so Anaya gave her cocaine to calm her.

The reports state the victim rode with Anaya, Morales and Wolfson the next day to San Luis Obispo County, where she was driven to several houses for sex with men. Anaya had additionally set up an advertisement for the sex on a website.

After Silveira joined the group in San Luis Obispo, the victim said, she was forced to have sex with nine more men, who paid up to $180 for a half-hour. Anaya and Silveira split the money, she told police. She was never paid.

Meanwhile, in her hometown, the girl was reported as a missing person.

While the others left to get food, she was able to make a quick call to her father in Manteca while at a Monterey Street motel. The girl’s father then called police in Manteca, who informed police in San Luis Obispo that a girl was being held against her will.

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