MADISON (WKOW) – A Madison man was sentenced today to 25 years in prison after being convicted of multiple prostitution and sex-trafficking charges.
Erin F. Graham, Jr., 37, of Madison, was convicted following a five-day jury trial in April.
According to prosecutors, between 2015 and 2017, Graham engaged in sex trafficking by force, coercion and fraud and transported women across state lines with the intent that they engage in prostitution.
The scheme was uncovered in April 2017 when law enforcement officials encountered one of the victims at a Madison hotel when an employee called 911 after the victim ran from her room bleeding and hid behind the front desk.
The victim told a nurse at a Madison hospital that she had been strangled to the point of unconsciousness by Graham when she told him she wanted to leave.
The victims testified that they were forced to engage in multiple acts of prostitution and turned over money they earned to Graham and his girlfriend, Patience Moore, 28, of Madison.
The victims testified that they were the only source of income for Graham and Moore. Moore pleaded guilty for her role in this sex trafficking scheme on March 14.
“Through violence and coercion, Graham exploited vulnerable young women into committing commercial sex acts for his profit. In the process the victims were often degraded and robbed of their human dignity,” U.S. Attorney Scott C. Blader said. “We will continue to work closely with our law enforcement partners to bring human traffickers to justice.”
Prosecutors say Graham posted advertisements on Backpage.com and forced or coerced individuals to commit sex acts with those who responded to the ads.
In addition, prosecutors say, Graham transported two women between Wisconsin and Virginia with the intent that they engage in prostitution.