On Thursday, Oct. 8, San Bernardino County Human Trafficking Task Force investigators charged Brandon McDonald, 24, of Rialto of human trafficking two San Bernardino 17-year-olds who deputies rescued and reunited with their families.
According to a sheriff’s department press release, on Friday, July 31, the task force received information that two missing juvenile females were possible victims of human trafficking. Investigators worked to locate the minor victims and identify any other subjects with them.
During the course of the investigation, one of the missing juveniles was located and placed with family members. The task force members continued to conduct surveillance and located the second juvenile near the area of Vineyard Avenue and Holt Boulevard in the city of Ontario. Investigators observed the juvenile with McDonald and made contact with them, both subjects were positively identified.
Believing McDonald was possibly involved in exploiting the victim, investigators, assisted by uniformed Ontario Police Officers, detained and questioned him. He and the victim were transported to the Ontario Police Department for an additional interview.
The victim was rescued, provided access to services and support organizations, and then safely released to family members. McDonald was taken into custody and booked at West Valley Detention Center for his probation violation.
During subsequent interviews with McDonald, the victims, and additional evidence, investigators discovered information supporting McDonald's involvement in the commercialized sexual exploitation of the juvenile victims.
On Oct. 8, 2020, was charged with felony human trafficking of a minor. He is being held on $200,000 bail, and was found to be on probation for a previous conviction of pandering by procuring.
The San Bernardino County Human Trafficking Task Force is made up of investigators from the San Bernardino County Sheriff's Department, Redlands Police Department, office of Homeland Security and the Federal Bureau of Investigation.
This investigation is ongoing. Investigators believe there are other unidentified victims related to this case and are asking that anyone with information related to this investigation contact the San Bernardino County Human Trafficking Task Force at (909) 387-8400. Anyone wishing to remain anonymous may contact We-Tip at 1 (888) 78-CRIME or you may leave information on the WE-Tip Hotline at wetip.com.