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Billings woman pleads guilty for role in sex trafficking

Billings woman pleads guilty for role in sex trafficking

A Billings woman faces up to 10 years in prison and a $250,000 fine after she pleaded guilty Thursday to taking three people to a bus station in town for a trip to Georgia to engage in commercial sex.

Destiny Lachelle Nilsen, 26, changed her plea to charges of transportation of a person with intent to engage in prostitution following her arrest with three others in March. The arrests involved the alleged coercion of 18 women into commercial sex work. Louis Gregory Venning, a co-defendant in Nilsen's case, is accused of trafficking nine women in Montana, Wyoming, Tennessee, Georgia and Missouri.

Nilsen, according to a press release from the U.S. Department of Justice, drove Venning and two women to a Billings bus station to go to Georgia in August 2019. They intended to go to Georgia to engage in prostitution, where it is illegal. Although initially pleading not guilty, Nilsen admitted her involvement during a jail call.

U.S. Magistrate Judge Timothy J. Cavan presided over the case.

Nilsen has since been released pending further court proceedings, and along with the fine and maximum prison time of 10 years, three of those will be of supervised released.

Following the FBI’s decision to cut how much time its lead agent spends on human trafficking in Montana by 50%, the state launched a full-time human trafficking team based out of Billings.

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