(AP) — A judge sentenced a New Mexico father to 20 years in prison after he was convicted of forcing his children to panhandle to get him money for drugs.
The office of Attorney General Hector Balderas said Monday the man was sentenced in Albuquerque, nearly three months after a jury found him guilty of three counts of human trafficking.
The Associated Press is not naming the father to avoid identifying the children, whom authorities also say were sex crime victims.
Authorities say the father forced all three of his children to panhandle around Albuquerque between 2015 and 2018.
The children later testified against him.
The father denied the charges during the trial and said he doesn’t do drugs.
The attorney general’s office has three other cases pending against him on charges that include child abuse, criminal sexual contact of a minor, and more human trafficking counts.
The victims are also his children, prosecutors said.