Victory Inn human trafficking ring leader arrested after 3-year manhunt, ICE says

ICE: Darrick Bell led large-scale human trafficking operation

Darrick Bell (ICE)
Darrick Bell (ICE)

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:

July 28, 2017: Man arrested in connection with Victory Inn sex trafficking ring

April 17, 2017: More charges issued in Victory Inn crime ring; woman accused of harboring person from arrest

April 3, 2017: Shuttered Victory Inn motel clerk accused of helping to run prostitution, drug ring

March 31, 2017: Unsealed indictment describes extent of crime organization at Victory Inn motel in Detroit

March 30, 2017: Fire rips through shuttered Victory Inn motel on Michigan Avenue

March 21, 2017: Alleged pimp in Victory Inn prostitution ring to remain behind bars after detention hearing

March 17, 2017: Alleged pimp considered among leaders of Victory Inn prostitution ring arrested

Feb. 9, 2017: Victory Inn raid leads to sex trafficking, drug distribution, conspiracy charges

Jan. 12, 2017: Police raid Victory Inn motel on Michigan Avenue in Detroit

About the Author: