CHICAGO (STMW) — A Chicago pimp on Monday was convicted of trafficking juvenile girls as young as 12 — forcing them into prostitution and keeping them in the profession through beatings and violent threats.

Datqunn Sawyer, 32, faces a mandatory minimum of 15 years behind bars following a trial that exposed the violent underworld of forced sex trafficking in Chicago.

The jury deliberated several hours beginning Friday afternoon following a two-week trial in U.S. District Court. The trial showed that Sawyer was a pimp who chose vulnerable victims, including girls who were young, homeless, or runaways, and used violence and threats of violence to exploit them sexually, knowing that they were minors.

Sawyer, 32, remains in federal custody without bond and faces a maximum sentence of life in prison on each count, as well as a mandatory minimum of 15 years on nine of the counts. U.S. District Judge Charles Kocoras scheduled sentencing for Feb. 23, 2012.

Testimony at the trial showed a similar pattern: the girls were 12 to 17 when Sawyer befriended them.

The girls, who often said they fell in love with him, were given names beginning with “P,” after his own nickname, “P Child,” and branded with “P Child” tattoos or with Sawyer’s favorite saying after girls handed him cash from the day: “Chedda make it betta.”

(Source: Sun-Times Media Wire © Chicago Sun-Times 2010. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)



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