Queens District Attorney Richard Brown announced Monday that Albert Premnauth, 24, was convicted after a week-long trial of rape, criminal sexual act and endangering the welfare of a child at his home in Richmond Hill in February 2016.
The victim, a 14-year-old girl at the time, became entangled with Premnauth after she jokingly posted a nude video of herself on Snapchat to another 14-year-old girl in early 2016, according to the district attorney’s office.
The friend of the victim shared the video with Jacob Marcial, 18, of Kew Gardens, according to the district attorney’s office.
“This case tragically demonstrates how dangerous it is for teenagers to take explicit images or videos of themselves and then to send them to others — even those they consider to be their friends,” said Brown. “The video then ended up in the hands of the 18-year-old male friend, who threatened to post it online if the victim did not have sex with the defendant to pay off his debt.”
Marcial, who was in debt to Premnauth, his alleged marijuana dealer, threatened to use the video to force the 14-year-old victim to have sex with the defendant in order to clear his payment, according to Brown.
Marcial, who pleaded guilty to sex trafficking the victim on Sept. 14, had arranged for the 14-year-old girl to have sex with the defendant, but after reaching Premnauth’s home she told him her age and begged him to give her time to pay off the debt in another way, according to the case presented by the district attorney’s office.
Premnauth refused the victim’s offer and forced her to have sex with him on Feb. 20, 2016, and gave her $100 in cash and a Beats by Dre headphones, which Marcial was to sell and use to pay back the defendant.
After a weeklong jury trial that concluded last Friday, Premnauth was convicted of rape and other charges and faces up to seven years in prison at his sentencing, which was scheduled for July 18 by Acting Supreme Court Justice Peter Vallone Jr., the judge who presided over the case.
Upon Premnauth release from jail he will have to register as a sex offender.
“The defendant, despite the victim’s tears and literally begging not to be raped, was violated by the defendant. A jury weighed all the evidence presented at trial and found the defendant guilty. He will now face serious prison time for his actions,” Brown said.
Marcial was scheduled to be sentenced on July 31 and faces up to 25 years in prison.
Reach reporter Naeisha Rose by e-mail at nrose