Carr: Human Trafficking Prosecution Unit Arrests Two for Solicitation
ATLANTA, GA – Attorney General Chris Carr today announced the arrest of Daniel Horne and Gregory Benoit for solicitation, statutory rape and aggravated child molestation involving a 15-year-old female victim. The arrests stem from an ongoing investigation by the Attorney General’s Human Trafficking Prosecution Unit.
“We are leaving no stone unturned in our pursuit of those who abuse and exploit Georgia’s children for sex,” said Carr.
“Since creating our Human Trafficking Prosecution Unit in 2019, we have dedicated every resource available to rescuing victims and prosecuting buyers and sellers alike. We have worked this case for more than a year, and we will continue to explore all sides of an investigation to ensure that justice is served.”
During a forensic interview in 2019, the victim disclosed that she was sold for sex by Theodore Browne, Jr. and Christopher Weldon over a period of several months in 2018. Browne and Weldon were subsequently indicted in September 2021.
Following this indictment, the Human Trafficking Prosecution Unit continued to investigate in an effort to identify anyone who purchased the victim for sex. This led to the recent arrest of both Horne and Benoit. Specifically, Horne was arrested on June 23, 2022, in Canton. Benoit was arrested on July 3, 2022, in Brookhaven.
A summary of the charges against the defendants is included below.
- One count of Trafficking Persons for Sexual Servitude, O.C.G.A. § 16-5-46(c).
- One count of Statutory Rape, O.C.G.A. § 16-6-3(a).
- One count of Aggravated Child Molestation, O.C.G.A. § 16-6-4(c).
A Clayton County Magistrate Court judge signed the arrest warrants* for Horne on June 22, 2022, and for Benoit on June 30, 2022. If convicted of all charges, the defendants could face the maximum potential sentence of life plus 40 years.
The following law enforcement agencies assisted in this investigation.
- Canton Police Department
- Brookhaven Police Department
About the Human Trafficking Prosecution Unit
In 2019, with the help of Governor Brian Kemp, Georgia First Lady Marty Kemp and leaders in the Georgia General Assembly, Carr created the first-of-its-kind statewide Human Trafficking Prosecution Unit.
In 2021, the Human Trafficking Prosecution Unit initiated 25 cases, arrested nine individuals, investigated and prosecuted 51 defendants, and rescued and assisted 107 victims. In January 2022, the Unit indicted 15 defendants, including nine individuals charged with solicitation.
During the 2022 legislative session, Carr secured additional resources to expand the Human Trafficking Prosecution Unit and rescue even more victims.
*Members of the public should keep in mind that arrest warrants contain only allegations against the individual against whom the arrest is made. The individual in custody is presumed innocent until proven guilty, and it will be the government’s burden at trial to prove the individual guilty beyond a reasonable doubt of the allegations contained in the arrest warrant.