Gang member sentenced to 12½ years for selling child for sex

Florida Department of Corrections photo of Antwan Deshawn Harper

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – A 22-year-old Jacksonville man was sentenced Thursday to 12 years and 6 months in federal prison for sex trafficking a child, according to the U.S. Attorney's Office.

Antwan Harper, also known as Pappy, pleaded guilty last November. U.S. District Judge Marcia Morales Howard also ordered Harper to serve a five-year term of supervision after his release from prison and to register as a sex offender.

According to court documents, Harper met a 15-year-old girl in December 2015 and advertised her for prostitution on the internet. He was paid for the girl to perform sexual acts with his associates and fellow members of the PYC street gang.

The victim was rescued and Harper was arrested by the Jacksonville Sheriff's Office, charged with multiple counts of sexual battery and lascivious molestation of victims under 16. The local charges were dropped when the case was turned over to the federal courts for prosecution.