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Duluth man gets 25 years for child sex trafficking

A 25-year stint in federal prison will be the punishment for a Duluth man accused of prostituting a child throughout the Upper Midwest and using the profits to purchase jewelry and a flat-screen television.

Markeace Arque Canty’s sentence was announced Friday by U.S. Attorney Andrew Luger, who said in a release that the defendant trafficked a 17-year-old girl for “his own personal enrichment.” Also known as “Quake,” Canty was found guilty of conspiring to commit sex trafficking of a child and sex trafficking of a child by a federal jury in a Sept. 12, 2013, decision.

“Victims of sex trafficking may never recover from the harm done to them,” Luger said in the release, adding that the U.S. Attorney’s Office “will aggressively continue to prosecute those who prey on children.”

Canty, 33, was accused of prostituting the girl at locations in Minnesota, Wisconsin, North Dakota, Illinois and Indiana. He allegedly brought the girl to hotels in the Duluth, Twin Cities and Chicago areas, where he would then accept payments for her to engage in commercial sex acts.

According to a May 7 indictment and evidence presented during the trial, Canty recruited and then transported the girl from at least July 2012 until January 2013.

Further evidence and court documents show Canty placed advertisements in the “adult entertainment” section of Law enforcement officials spotted Canty and the girl multiple times at various hotels, including one night during which the girl agreed to perform sex acts with an undercover police officer in exchange for $200. She was arrested at least once on suspicion of engaging in prostitution while with Canty.

In January 2013, FBI agents and officers from the Grand Forks (N.D.) Police Department conducted a warranted search of a hotel room booked in Canty’s name. Agents seized an iPhone that contained incriminating photos of advertisements, jewelry, a flat-screen television and Canty displaying an unspecified amount of money.

The federal jury in September acquitted Canty of one count of receipt of child pornography.

Canty’s sentence includes another six years of supervision following his release.