GWINNETT COUNTY, Ga. — The all-out, statewide assault on human trafficking and violent crime has resulted in another massive racketeering case targeting eight defendants.
They're accused in a 96-count Gwinnett County Grand Jury indictment--obtained by Georgia Attorney General Chris Carr as part of his special Gang and Human Trafficking Prosecution Units--in a racketeering and terrorism scheme that the Grand Jury says victimized women, and involved assaults and kidnapping.
One of the eight defendants is a former Atlanta Falcons football player, Eric Johnson, who played in the NFL for six seasons.
The indictment accuses the six men and two women with conspiracy, trafficking women for sexual servitude, terrorism, kidnapping, aggravated assault, gang activity and racketeering.
The Attorney General’s Office describes Johnson as one of the three leaders of the so-called “Lotto” gang, orchestrating violent crimes with the others.
Johnson began his NFL career with the Oakland Raiders in 2000, playing for four seasons; in Super Bowl XXXVII in 2003, Johnson, on defense, recovered a blocked punt and ran for a touchdown.
Johnson later played one season with the Atlanta Falcons, and one more season with the Arizona Cardinals.
Now, the man in his 20s whose life was full of promise, potential, and opportunities for success, is accused of living a life of crime; just one of the accusations in the indictment against Johnson is that he and others in the gang trafficked an underaged teen girl for sex.
The indictment is only the latest in the anti-human trafficking and anti-gang war led by Carr and Georgia Governor Brian Kemp, aimed at preventing gangs from recruiting and exploiting children, and rescuing children kidnapped and forced into human trafficking.
The on-going investigations have resulted in 15 indictments targeting 58 defendants across the state since July, so far.