Human trafficking suspects

STOCKTON — Two Tracy men accused of human trafficking were sentenced to state prison after accepting a plea bargain offered by the San Joaquin County District Attorney’s office.

According to Deputy District Attorney Elton Grau, both Dominick Diaz, 23, and Erwin Alejandro Molina-Almonte, 20, of Tracy, were sentenced by Judge Bernard Garber on the morning of Sept. 22 in Department 23 of San Joaquin County Superior Court in Stockton.

Grau said that Diaz was sentenced to six years in state prison and Molina-Almonte to three years in prison, both for the charge of pimping. He said all their remaining charges were dismissed in light of their plea.

Grau declined to discuss the plea in further detail and referred all further questions to Robert Himelblau, who oversees media requests for the district attorney’s office.

According to Himelblau, the difference in prison sentences depends upon the level of culpability and history of the defendants. He said each person is sentenced independently.

Diaz had been charged with human trafficking, pandering by procuring for the purpose of prostitution, pimping, forcible oral copulation, assault with a firearm and forcible rape.

Molina-Almonte had faced charges of kidnapping, first-degree robbery and rape by force.

The two men were arrested as part of a human trafficking investigation that led police to three houses in Tracy in November.

Diaz was arrested by San Joaquin County Sheriff’s deputies during a vehicle stop Nov. 11 in Stockton. Molina-Almonte was arrested Nov. 24 on the 300 block of Ranchero Way during a search by county deputies.

Contact Denise Ellen Rizzo at drizzo@tracypress.com or 830-4225.

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