Twin brothers Tyrelle (right) and Myrelle Lockett (left) were the masterminds of a sex trafficking and prostitution ring in Chicago, using social media and smartphones to lure teenage girls into their insidious business. The Lockett brothers, now 21, are both back in the system after becoming the first individuals arrested for human trafficking under Illinois law back in 2010.
The Daily Beast ran a profile on the Lockett brothers case which revealed that, despite their second chance, the twins still dove right back into becoming online pimps in 2012.
Using Facebook to recruit the underage sex workers, girls as young as 14 fell prey to the persistent whims of Tyrelle Lockett on the social media network. In fact, while on parole from his earlier case, Myrelle used online messaging to kidnap an 18-year-old woman. The woman, who was pregnant at the time, escaped by climbing a fence. Myrelle was later arrested for the crime.
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“You would think that people learn their lesson,” says Sgt. William Leen of the Cook County Sheriff’s Office, who was involved in making the past and recent cases against the twins. “But obviously they didn’t.”
Myrelle is accused of attempting to force a woman he met on the Internet into prostitution. Tyrelle is being held on federal charges of trafficking in underage girls. Authorities say he took sex trafficking completely digital, one of a new generation of pimps who need only a smartphone to recruit girls, take pictures, post ads, and make appointments with johns.
The Chicago Sun-Times reported on Tyrelle’s conviction late last week which also names the twin’s father, who has been charged with running a prostitution operation separate from the charges his sons face. The Times also reports that the Lockett twins may have had other unnamed partners in their illegal operation.
Tyrelle Lockett will appear in a Chicago court on Friday.