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8 men plead guilty in Santa Ana sex sting

July 16, 2013 12:00:00 AM PDT
Eight men arrested in a Santa Ana sting operation in May pleaded guilty on Monday to soliciting sex from an undercover police officer that they believed to be a prostitute, according to the Orange County District Attorney's Office.

Michael Davis, 36, Heladio Herrera, 21, Silvestre Jacob, 40, Paulino Martinez, 40, Tony Nguyen, 45, Luis Ortiz, 27, Francisco Rios, 33, and Herbert Yoneoka, 68, were all convicted and sentenced for soliciting someone to engage in prostitution, the district attorney's office said. Three also pleaded guilty to driving without a license.

The eight men approached an undercover female police officer on Harbor Boulevard in Santa Ana on the night of May 15, offering money in exchange for sex, according to the D.A.'s office. They were arrested in an undercover sting operation set up by officers from the Santa Ana Police Department on suspicion of soliciting sex or sex acts.

The district attorney's office said the Harbor Boulevard area is known to law enforcement as a high-prostitution area, used by pimps and human traffickers to exploit women and underage girls for money.

The eight men were sentenced to three years of informal probation. Rios was sentenced to 15 days in jail with the possibility of working for CalTrans in lieu of jail, Yoneoka was sentenced to 10 days in jail with the possibility of community service instead, and the other six were sentenced to 10 days in jail with the possibility of CalTrans work.


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