State News

September 29, 2013

Man faces life in child sex trafficking case

A man faces up to life in prison when he’s sentenced Monday for a sexual assault on a 4-year-old girl and making a video of the attack with another man who was also convicted in the case.

Jemery Atral Hodges, 26, pleaded guilty in June to two counts — child sex trafficking and the production of child pornography. U.S. District Judge David Bramlette III will sentence Hodges in U.S. District Court in Jackson.

The trafficking charge carries a possible sentence of 15 years to life in prison.

A second defendant in the case, Marco Laquin Rogers, went to trial on the same charges and was convicted by a jury on Sept. 11. His sentencing date is Dec. 12.

Authorities say the men attacked the girl at a Jackson hotel room in May 2012 after Rogers, who was acquainted with one of her relatives, brought her to Mississippi from Memphis, Tenn., under the guise of taking her to a party.

Court records say the multistate investigation began on Sept. 6, 2012, in Cambridge, Mass., after Hodges asked another man if he liked young girls and showed him explicit images of children on his cellphone.  

Hodges told the man that he knows someone who had “hooked him up with a couple of young girls,” an affidavit said.

The man kicked Hodges out of his house and called police, according to court records.

After his arrest in Massachusetts, Hodges told authorities that Rogers had access to a young girl for sexual acts, according to a criminal affidavit filed in court records. The complaint also said Rogers traveled with the child to and from three states.

Court records say both men are from Mississippi, but Rogers was living in Atlanta and Hodges in Cambridge, Mass.

Authorities charged Rogers in October after serving him with a court order compelling him to allow agents to photograph scars on his stomach and right leg. Prosecutors said the scars matched those on a man abusing the child in the video.

Both men were indicted by a federal grand jury in Mississippi in November.

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