Clifford Augustin, 19, admitted in State Supreme Court in Kew Gardens June 2 that he convinced the girl, who was not identified, to sell herself for sex over a 24-day span last year and told her to lie about her age and deny knowing him, Brown said.
"The defendant has admitted to recruiting a 15-year-old girl into a life of prostitution and turning her into a sexual vending machine," the DA said in a statement. "His imprisonment is just punishment for a terrible crime - degrading a vulnerable young woman, eroding her humanity and destroying her hope."
Augustin, of 138-05 Caney Lane, was initially charged with promoting prostitution, endangering the welfare of a child and conspiracy, but he pleaded guilty to attempted promoting prostitution last week as part of a plea agreement with the district attorney, Brown said.
He was expected to receive one to three years in prison when he is sentenced later this month, Brown said.
Augustin approached the girl and her sister at a clothing store in the Green Acres Mall in Valley Stream, L.I. in August and allegedly told them they could make a lot of money through prostitution, Brown said. He later called the girl and explained the business of prostitution to her, including giving her tips on how to pick up men, the DA said.
The girl worked as a prostitute in the Queens Plaza South, Jamaica and Rockaway areas between Sept. 12 and Oct. 8. Augustin allegedly set her prices, telling her to charge $50 for oral sex, $80 for intercourse and $100 an hour to have sex in a hotel room, Brown said. The girl performed at least two or three tricks a night, earning a total of $4,800, the DA said.
She turned the money over to Augustin, Brown said.
Augustin was arrested in Queens Plaza Feb. 5 after a street fight and was initially charged with weapons possession. Detectives found motel receipts, a motel key, condoms and $600 in cash on the defendant, Brown said.
Reach reporter Courtney Dentch by e-mail at news@times
©2004 Community News Group
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