Public Safety

Iowa City man pleads to sex trafficking charges

Faces at least 20 years in federal prison

Arrion West Jr.
Arrion West Jr.

DES MOINES — An Iowa City man, who was charged with four other Eastern Iowa men last year for sex trafficking teens, pleaded Monday to two charges and faces a mandatory minimum of 20 years in prison.

Arrion M. West Jr., 26, pleaded in U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Iowa to two charges of sex trafficking — forcing a 15-year-old girl and a 17-year-old girl to have sex with men for money, according to a plea agreement.

West, in the plea, admitted that he recruited and enticed a 15-year-old girl to have sex with men for money in October through November 2018. He arranged the sex acts for the girl and knew she was under 18 at the time.

West also admitted in the plea that he recruited a 17-year-old through a dating app in January 2018 and then advertised her as an escort for commercial sex acts from February through March on websites such as Backpage.com.

In the plea, he admitted to renting rooms for the sex acts at various hotels in January through March in Iowa City and other locations in the Southern District. He also forced the teen to contact “clients.”

The plea also shows West lied to law enforcement about how long he had known the teen and claimed he wasn’t involved in prostitution in February 2018.

Iowa City police responded March 30, 2018, to a hotel to investigate a woman being held against her will in a room, according to court documents filed in Johnson County District Court. The 17-year-old told police she met West through social media and he convinced her to become a prostitute.

The 17-year-old said her first time having sex for money was in a hotel in Cedar Rapids in late 2018. She didn’t get to keep any of the money and was forced to have sex every day.

West faces a mandatory 10 years on each count, according to the plea agreement. His sentencing is set May 4 in U.S. District Court.

Others charged or convicted:   

• Tommy Tate Collins, 41, of Cedar Rapids, is charged with sex trafficking a minor, and distributing marijuana and cocaine to the minor, according to an indictment. His trial is set March 9.

• Isaiah Devon Patterson, 22, of Cedar Rapids, pleaded to one count of sex trafficking a minor. He faces a mandatory minimum of 10 years and his sentencing is Jan. 9.

• Albert Kelly Price, 39, pleaded to two counts of sex trafficking and faces a mandatory minimum of 10 years in prison on each count. His sentencing is set Feb. 7.

• Kendall Andrew Streb, 52, is charged with sex trafficking two minors by transporting them to hotel rooms and paying the minor victims to engage in sex acts. He is charged with distributing methamphetamine to minors, possession with intent to distribute methamphetamine and with offenses related to possessing firearms while being a drug user and in connection with a drug trafficking offense. His trial is set Jan. 21.

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