LITTLE ROCK, Ark. — An Arkansas woman was sentenced to 10 years in federal prison June 5, after being convicted of felony human trafficking for forcing her minor daughter to perform sexual acts in exchange for drugs. The sentencing follows an investigation by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement's (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations (HSI), the Arkansas State Police and the Cleburne County Sheriff's Department.
Shannon Adams, 44, of Searcy, was previously convicted in March of forcing her minor child to engage in sexual acts with Don Ray Harris, 59, of Heber Springs. Harris pleaded guilty to possession of child pornography in February and agreed to testify against Adams.
According to court documents, Adams allowed Harris to sexually assault her daughter in her presence and allowed photos to be taken during the sexual assault. HSI and the Cleburne County Sheriff's Department recovered photographs of the sexual abuse during the course of the investigation.
In addition to the prison term, U.S. District Judge Billy Roy Wilson ordered Adams to serve five years supervised release following the completion of her sentence, register as a sex offender, and she is prohibited from regaining custody of her minor children once released from custody.
This investigation was conducted under HSI's Operation Predator, an international initiative to protect children from sexual predators. Since the launch of Operation Predator in 2003, HSI has arrested more than 10,000 individuals for crimes against children, including the production and distribution of online child pornography, traveling overseas for sex with minors, and sex trafficking of children. In fiscal year 2013, more than 2,000 individuals were arrested by HSI special agents under this initiative.
HSI encourages the public to report suspected child predators and any suspicious activity through its toll-free Tip Line at 1-866-DHS-2-ICE or by completing its online tip form. Both are staffed around the clock by investigators. Suspected child sexual exploitation or missing children may be reported to the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children, an Operation Predator partner, via its toll-free 24-hour hotline, 1-800-THE-LOST.
HSI is a founding member and current chair of the Virtual Global Taskforce, an international alliance of law enforcement agencies and private industry sector partners working together to prevent and deter online child sexual abuse.