ORLANDO, Fla. – A man accused of luring a teenage girl he met through an app and prostituting her at a hotel near International Drive has been arrested on a human trafficking charge, according to authorities.
Timothy Bernard White, 22, was charged with human trafficking for commercial sexual activity of a child under 18 on May 31, documents from the Orange County Sheriff's Office show.
Metropolitan Bureau of Investigation Agent Aaron Blankenship received a call from Osceola County Sheriff’s Office detectives about a missing juvenile May 31. MBI and FBI agents later found the 17-year-old female victim, who had run away from a group home in Tampa, in the lobby of the Orlando Metropolitan Resort at 8444 Austrian Court, which is near International Drive.
According to deputies, the victim confirmed in a sworn audio-recorded statement that she and White met on the app MeetMe in January and talked for several months. Deputies say the victim and White had planned for her to prostitute, with the understanding that she would keep the money she made from performing sexual acts.
Deputies say White picked the girl up from a restaurant in Kissimmee on May 30 and had sex with her before leaving her with prostitution customers Christopher David Jackson and Steven Ramos. The victim received cash and a “sack of weed” as payment, which White took, according to authorities.
Jackson, 34, and Ramos, 40, were arrested and charged with human trafficking and other sex crimes for soliciting sexual acts from the victim.
“The customers of the prostitutes are contributing as much to the problem as anyone else because if there was not a demand for these services, they would not be supplied,” MBI director Ron Strucker said on Thursday. “They are also going to be held accountable for their acts for engaging with sex with a minor and being involved with prostitution with a minor.”
White’s girlfriend told agents she knew he had worked females for prostitution. She led Blankenship to the cannabis White had confiscated from the victim.
White was arrested and transported to the Orange County jail.