HATTIESBURG, Miss. (AP) — A man arrested as part of a multistate kidnapping and human trafficking investigation pleaded guilty Wednesday to a charge of transporting a woman across state lines for prostitution.

Ruperto Moncillo Flores and Jacobo Feliciano-Francisco were arrested June 27 after a distraught woman walked into a police department in Hattiesburg, Miss., and said she had been abducted in Panama City Beach, Fla.

The woman had been a witness in a prior human trafficking case, which led to numerous convictions in Tennessee and Kentucky.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Annette Williams said during the change of plea hearing for Flores that the victim heard her abductors call someone to take her to a “house of prostitution” in Baton Rouge, La.

Williams said Flores, of Lawrenceville, Ga., was arrested in Jones County, Miss., when his van broke down before he made it to pick up the kidnapping victim in Hattiesburg. Police were on the lookout for someone coming for the victim.

Williams said Flores had no knowledge of the abduction, but was asked to transport the woman to Louisiana for prostitution.

Another woman with Flores when he was arrested told police that Flores was taking her from Georgia to Louisiana for that purpose. It led to the charge against Flores — a violation of the Mann Act.

Flores faces up to 10 years at sentencing on Jan. 16.

Flores, a short, rotund man with thinning salt-and-pepper hair, was shackled and wore a red and white striped jail outfit during the sentencing. He needed a translator for the hearing in U.S. District Court in Hattiesburg. At one point, his lawyer said Flores wanted to make sure the court understood that he was not involved in the abduction.

Williams said the abduction started an investigation into a “multistate prostitution ring and human trafficking organization.”

Feliciano-Francisco, also known as Uriel Castillo-Ochoa, is charged in U.S. District Court in Panama City, Fla., with kidnapping the former witness. He pleaded not guilty on Aug. 12 to five charges, including kidnapping and retaliating against a witness.

Another suspect is being sought in the case.

Authorities said the victim was in her yard in Florida when Feliciano-Francisco and an unidentified man forced her into a car and drove to Feliciano-Francisco’s house in Hattiesburg. Investigators say Feliciano-Francisco sexually assaulted the victim and planned to force her to work as a prostitute in Louisiana.

Williams said phone records corroborate that the abductors called Flores that day.

The kidnapping victim escaped through a bathroom window that evening and went to the Hattiesburg Police Department about 6:30 p.m.

Feliciano-Francisco was arrested at the house that night. Flores was arrested on Interstate 59 in Jones County.

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