ATLANTA, GA – Attorney General Chris Carr today announced the indictment of Dionte Johnson, age 30, of Atlanta, on two counts of Trafficking of Persons for Sexual Servitude. Johnson was previously employed as a clerk at the Economy Hotel in Fulton County, where these acts are alleged to have occurred.
“This indictment is just the latest in a larger investigation that started with a traffic stop in Cherokee County and led to a hotel in Atlanta,” said Carr. “Working with our partners at the GBI, we are using all resources at our disposal to identify and hold accountable every person who engaged in the trafficking of this underage victim. We will not rest in our pursuit of justice for this young woman, and we will keep fighting each day to protect our most vulnerable Georgians.”
This indictment stems from an ongoing investigation led by the Georgia Bureau of Investigation’s (GBI) Human Exploitation and Trafficking (HEAT) Unit and the Attorney General’s Human Trafficking Prosecution Unit. In addition to Dionte Johnson, five other men have already been indicted in Fulton and Cherokee counties.
“Selling minors for sex will not be tolerated,” said GBI Director Mike Register. “Our HEAT Unit is dedicated to investigating sex and labor trafficking around the state. We are thankful to partner with the Attorney General’s Office as they prosecute these heinous crimes and bring justice to vulnerable victims.”
Dionte Johnson Indictment
Throughout the course of a larger investigation, Analyst Umniah Al Bayati with the Human Trafficking Prosecution Unit found evidence to suggest that a hotel clerk had knowingly assisted in the trafficking of a 16-year-old female victim. After further analysis by the HEAT Unit, the GBI arrested and charged Dionte Johnson on Feb. 14, 2023.
Specifically, Dionte Johnson is alleged to have knowingly provided the rooms in which the trafficking occurred. He is also alleged to have solicited the underage victim for sex.
The Attorney General’s Human Trafficking Prosecution Unit presented evidence to a Fulton County Grand Jury, resulting in Dionte Johnson’s indictment* on March 20, 2023.
On Dec. 18, 2021, a traffic stop was conducted on a vehicle driven by Mark Thomas in Cherokee County, and a 16-year-old female was located in the passenger seat.
The minor female disclosed that she had been sold for sex by Mark Thomas for approximately three months beginning in September 2021 when she was 15 years old.
In part, Mark Thomas is alleged to have driven the child to Woodstock, Georgia, to be sold to Jose Medina Dominguez and Cesar Juarez Oaxaca. On Oct. 10, 2022, Mark Thomas, Jose Medina Dominguez and Cesar Juarez Oaxaca were indicted* in Cherokee County.
Mark Thomas is also alleged to have sold the victim along Fulton Industrial Boulevard and in surrounding hotels, including the Economy Hotel. Cedric Johnson is alleged to have assisted Mark Thomas by, in part, receiving a portion of the financial proceeds from the sale of the underage victim. Ruben Tolentino is alleged to have purchased the child for sex. On Oct. 17, 2022, Mark Thomas, Cedric Johnson and Ruben Tolentino were indicted* in Fulton County.
No further information about the indictments or the investigation may be released at this time.
About the Attorney General’s Human Trafficking Prosecution Unit
In 2019, with the support of Governor Brian Kemp, Georgia First Lady Marty Kemp and leaders in the Georgia General Assembly, Attorney General Chris Carr created the first-of-its-kind statewide Human Trafficking Prosecution Unit.
As of today, the Attorney General’s Human Trafficking Prosecution Unit has 53 defendants who are currently under indictment for sex or labor trafficking, with some facing charges in multiple jurisdictions around the state.
In 2022, the Human Trafficking Prosecution Unit obtained six new convictions, led and assisted 33 case investigations, and rescued and assisted 116 victims.
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 indictments contain only allegations against the individual against whom the indictment is sought. A defendant is presumed innocent until proven guilty, and it will be the government’s burden at trial to prove the defendant guilty beyond a reasonable doubt of the allegations contained in the indictment.