Commonwealth of Virginia
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Jason S. Miyares
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Richmond, Virginia 23219
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Attorney General Miyares' Hampton Roads Human Trafficking Task Force Secures Indictments
Four Charged in Connection with Labor Trafficking, Forced Labor, and Immigration Offenses at Williamsburg Laundry Facility
NEWPORT NEWS, VA – A 33-count indictment was unsealed today charging four people with joining together to defraud and commit offenses against the United States, including human trafficking of individuals from Central America, benefiting from forced labor, money laundering, and various other immigration-related offenses, such as harboring undocumented non-citizens.
This investigation was conducted by the Hampton Roads Human Trafficking Task Force, a collaboration between federal, state, and local law enforcement and prosecutors, as well as non-governmental organizations, working together to combat human trafficking in the Hampton Roads Region. The task force was cofounded by the OAG and Homeland Security Investigations (HSI).
According to allegations in the indictment, Ana Patricia Landaverde, 47, of Williamsburg, Jeffrey Dean Vaughan, 64, of Williamsburg, and George William Evans, 68, of Midlothian, engaged in a conspiracy to harbor, transport, and benefit from the employment of undocumented noncitizens at their commercial laundry business, Northstar Holdings of Virginia LLC, d/b/a Magnolia Cleaning Services, LLC. Between the first quarter of 2018 and the first quarter of 2022, the business's wage records reflect approximately 121 employees with alleged invalid or mismatched Social Security Numbers and wage payments of more than $1.2 million to these employees.
The fourth unnamed defendant is alleged to have acted as an illegal supplier of fraudulent identification documents. Prospective employees without proper documentation to work in the United States were allegedly referred to this defendant to purchase a counterfeit permanent resident card and social security card.
"Human trafficking can occur anytime, anywhere, oftentimes in plain sight and in this case, in our own backyard,” said Attorney General Miyares. "I'm proud of the work the Hampton Roads Human Trafficking Taskforce did in leading this investigation.”
As further set forth in the indictment, Landaverde, Vaughan, and Evans also allegedly engaged in human trafficking of labor from Central America and benefitting from forced labor. One victim is alleged to have been brought to the United States when she was only 13 years old and forced to work nights while also attending school during the day. Allegations also include another victim being made to work under threats of deportation, physical violence, and other misuse of law and process. This same victim was made to pay rent to live in the commercial laundry facility where she lacked access to a kitchen, shower, or bath.
"These indictments are a great example of what can be accomplished when federal, state, and local law enforcement agencies work in collaboration,” said Acting Special Agent in Charge Derek W. Gordon of HSI Washington, D.C. "We will continue our partnerships with our law enforcement partners, through the Hampton Roads Human Trafficking Task Force. HSI will work tirelessly to disrupt and dismantle criminal organizations, like this one, in order to keep our communities safe from all criminal elements who would do harm to our law-abiding residents.”
More information can be found on the website of the U.S. Attorney's Office for the Eastern District of Virginia. Related court documents and information are located on the website of the District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia or on PACER by searching for Case No. 4:22-cr-92.