Victory Inn human trafficking ring leader arrested after 3-year manhunt, ICE says
ICE: Darrick Bell led large-scale human trafficking operation
DETROIT – Darrick Bell, 50, who went by aliases Tone or Ghost, was the focus of a nearly three-year manhunt following the takedown of a large-scale human trafficking operation at the now demolished Victory Inn Motel in Detroit.
U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) announced Wednesday that Bell, who is considered the leader of a sophisticated human trafficking and narcotics distribution operation in Detroit, was arrested in Monroe, Mich.
Authorities say they found nearly $12,000 and a quantity of suspected cocaine in Bell’s motel room. Authorities also arrested a female defendant who is facing drug charges.
Bell and five other defendants were charged in a 9-count indictment with trafficking in persons, drug trafficking, money laundering, extortion collection and conspiracy, among other charges.
He allegedly absconded before nearly 200 law enforcement personnel descended on the Victory Inn in Detroit back in January 2017. ICE calls it one of the largest human trafficking enforcement operations in the city’s history.
"The sophisticated operation at the motel allegedly was manned by lookouts and armed enforcers," reads a statement from ICE. "HSI special agents and deputy U.S. Marshals are actively investigating persons who aided and abetted Bell to evade capture."
More Victory Inn coverage:
March 30, 2017: Fire rips through shuttered Victory Inn motel on Michigan Avenue
Jan. 12, 2017: Police raid Victory Inn motel on Michigan Avenue in Detroit
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