A Fort Worth gang member who remained on the lam after being charged in July with participating in a prostitution ring that included sex trafficking of children is now in custody.
Deon “Spanish Fly” Bonner, 26, was arrested Sunday after he was found inside a house in the 3300 block of Hanger Avenue at which Fort Worth police were executing a warrant, according to a police spokeswoman.
He was being held in the Mansfield Jail on Monday on a federal hold.
Bonner is among eight people charged federally in connection with a prostitution ring that authorities say was in place from October 2013 to April 2016. All are charged with sex trafficking of children; sex trafficking of adults through force, fraud, or coercion; and/or conspiracy to engage in child sex trafficking.
Many of the suspects are believed to have ties with the Polywood Crips, a street gang that operates in the Polytechnic Heights neighborhood of Fort Worth.
Others charged in the case are Diwone “Pooh” Nobles; Chad “Chad Ocho Hood Fame” Johnson; Stanley “Pee Wee” Johnson; Audrey “Spud” Lane; Alvin “Spank” Lane; 32; Jessica Arnold; and Serrah “Kristen” Arnold.
The six male defendants are alleged to have served as pimps while the two female defendants — Jessica and Serrah Arnold — were “bottom girls,” a term given to the prostitute at the top of the hierarchy for one pimp.
According to a federal complaint, authorities had begun investigating the case in November 2015.
A mother told investigators that she had tracked her 16-year-old daughter’s cellphone to several hotels along Interstate 35W.
When she conducted a Google search on her daughter’s phone number, she found pictures of her daughter — dressed only in a bra and underwear — on commercial sex advertisements listed on Backpage.com and other websites, the complaint states.
The teen told authorities she was among four females who engaged in commercial sex at the direction of Bonner, Nobles and Chad Johnson.
Interviews with three other alleged victims — an adult woman and two females who were 17 when brought into the ring — implicated additional suspects in the case.
Some of the accused allegedly placed commercial sex advertisements involving the alleged victims on websites, including Backpage.com.
The alleged victims told investigators that the suspects would keep all the money they earned. If they did not follow instructions, some reported being beaten and raped.
All four alleged victims said they were “sold” back and forth between the suspects and that the suspects would frequently watch over them if their respective pimp left them alone.
Federal records show the five previously arrested male defendants remain in custody while the two female defendants were released pending trial.
A detention hearing has not yet been set for Bonner.
The investigation was conducted by the Department of Homeland Security in coordination with Fort Worth police, Arlington police, and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms.
Each charge carries a maximum punishment of life in federal prison and a $250,000 fine.
This report contains material from the Star-Telegram archives.