Photo: Courtesy of Ramsey County
Photo: Courtesy of Ramsey County
September 06, 2017 05:13 PM
A Mahtomedi man was sentenced to 19 years in prison after pleading guilty in Washington County Wednesday to sex trafficking and promoting prostitution.
The sentence for Shaun Michael Maubach, 32, was enhanced from 180 months to 228 in part because of a 2009 sex trafficking conviction.
Maubach turned over to authorities the key piece of evidence against him after he was arrested on a burglary warrant in Woodbury in June.
According to the criminal complaint, Maubach during that arrest was found to be in possession of methamphetamine. He offered to investigators that he had information regarding the location of $10,000 worth of methamphetamine and a "marijuana grow," and said pictures on his cell phone could prove it.
In examining the phone and pictures of the meth and marijuana grow, a Washington County Drug Task Force detective also noticed "pictures indicative of prostitution and other related activities," according to criminal complaint.
A warrant was later granted to search Maubach's cell phone.
During a search of the phone, investigators found a number of items consistent with commercial sex, including text conversations, an app designed to generate secondary phone lines, and a number generated from the app that was connected to more than 15 commercial sex ads posted in the metro area starting on June 17, according to the complaint.
Text messages sent from the phone also showed Maubach admitted he was a "pimp" and that he was "running 6 girls." A detective found what appeared to be secret video recordings "of suspected commercial sex customers having sex with known sex trafficking victims," the complaint says.
During the investigation, Maubach posted bond on a separate fugitive from justice charge in Washington county and was released from jail June 20. Shortly after his release, a detective found a commercial sex advertisement with images and a phone number matching subpoena findings from Maubach's Backpage.com account.
A Woodbury police detective then began a sting operation in which he texted the phone number and agreed to pay $250 in exchange for one hour. In an interview with a woman who was dropped off at the agreed meet-up for the sting, the woman admitted she was there for sex in exchange for money, that "Shaun" had dropped her off and that the money she earned from prostitution goes to paying "their bills."
The woman also told authorities Maubach tracked her phone to monitor where she is and what she's doing. She seemed relieved that police intervened, according to the complaint.
Authorities arrested Maubach when he returned to pick the woman up at the sting location.
He's got a criminal history that includes several violent crime convictions, according to the complaint. He was convicted in 2009 of a "qualified human trafficking-related offense," and authorities say they have identified at least one other sex-trafficking victim connected to him.
He was separately charged in Ramsey County in August for allegedly convincing his then-girlfriend to engage in prostitution in 2016.
Updated: September 06, 2017 05:13 PM
Created: September 06, 2017 03:48 PM
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