Four people have pleaded guilty for their roles in a sex-trafficking operation in Houston that used violence to force underage girls and women living in the U.S. illegally into prostitution.
The three men and one woman entered pleas during a hearing Thursday in federal court in Houston. Each pleaded guilty to conspiracy to harbor illegal aliens. Investigators say the ring made at least $12.6 million over more than a decade.
Odelia Hernandez and Abel Medeles, who are U.S. citizens, are set to be sentenced Oct. 10. Eduardo Guzman Gonzales and Alberto Mendez Flores, both from Mexico, will be sentenced Oct. 17. Each faces up to 10 years in prison.
Prosecutors say the four were among 13 people who were arrested last year. A 14th person remains a fugitive.