Houston man found guilty of sex trafficking a Louisiana child
Published 6:06 am Friday, February 18, 2022
United States Attorney Brandon B. Brown said Kevondric Fezia, 26, of Houston has been found guilty by a federal jury in Lafayette on sex trafficking charges. United States District Judge James D. Cain Jr. presided over the trial.
An indictment was returned by a federal grand jury on April 22, 2021, charging Fezia and his co-defendant, Calista Jenee Winfrey, 23, of Orange, Texas. The indictment charged Fezia and Winfrey both with one count of sex trafficking, and Fezia with one count of attempting to entice a minor to engage in prostitution. Winfrey entered a guilty plea prior to the trial.
The trial began this week and after deliberating for a short time yesterday afternoon, a federal jury in Lafayette found Fezia guilty on both counts. Testimony at the trial revealed that beginning in November 2020, Fezia was recruiting minor females to engage in prostitution and began communicating with a 14-year-old female in Lake Charles. Fezia was well aware when he began communicating with her that she was a minor, but he still pursued her and tried to convince her that she would make a lot of money by engaging in prostitution for him. The minor victim made a decision to run away with Fezia to Texas and on Feb. 13, 2021, he drove his Mercedes-Benz and picked up the minor victim and took her to Texas. Winfrey and Fezia both were well aware that the victim was only 14 years old, but they continued to try and convince her to engage in prostitution, according to Brown.
When the minor victim’s grandmother realized that she had run away from home, she began looking at the child’s social media accounts and found the communications between her granddaughter and Fezia. She then contacted law enforcement. Law enforcement officers were able to identify Fezia and found him at his apartment in Houston, Texas, along with other prostitutes and the minor victim. He attempted to hide her in the closet, but she and the other 16-year-old prostitute were found.
Fezia and Winfrey each face a maximum sentence of life in prison, not less than 5 years of supervised release, and a fine of up to $250,000.
The case was investigated by the Department of Homeland Security – Bureau of Immigration and Customs Enforcement and the Lake Charles Police Department and is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorneys J. Luke Walker and John W. Nickel.