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Man Could Get 50 Year Plus Sentence For Sex Trafficking Case In Santa Barbara County

A man who lured a Florida woman to California, and then forced her to work as a prostitute could face more than 50 years behind bars after pleading guilty to human trafficking charges in Santa Barbara County. Prosecutors say David Johnson initially told the 18 year old he loved her, but then forced her into sex work.

They say when she objected, he broke her nose and threatened to kill her. Santa Barbara Police detectives discovered the woman during an undercover operation looking for human trafficking victims who might be featured in online ads. It led to the 34-year-old man’s arrest.

The case was set to go to trial this week. But, Johnson changed his not guilty to guilty pleas to a half dozen charges ranging from pimping to causing great bodily injury.

Lance Orozco has been News Director of KCLU since 2001, providing award-winning coverage of some of the biggest news events in the region, including the Thomas and Woolsey brush fires, the deadly Montecito debris flow, the Borderline Bar and Grill attack, and Ronald Reagan's funeral.