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Accused prostitution ringleaders appear in court



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Nicole Gonzales reportingA man and woman charged in connection with a Sandy prostitution ring made their first appearance in court today.

Neither 26-year-old Dewayne Hopkins nor 18-year-old Julia Young entered a plea today, but they are scheduled to have a bond-reduction hearing next week. For now, both will remain in custody at Salt Lake County Jail with bond set at $100,000.

Accused prostitution ringleaders appear in court

"I'm just here to love and support my daughter, and I trust the court will find my daughter innocent," said Ruth Young, Julia's mother.

Julia Young is charged with four felony prostitution counts, as well as one count for possession of a controlled substance without a prescription.

Sandy police say Julia and her boyfriend, Dewayne Hopkins, arranged for their clients to meet girls as young as 15 years old for sex acts. Police say they advertised themselves as a massage business on the craigslist Web site.

Accused prostitution ringleaders appear in court

According to Julia's mother, she had been working as a waitress at a local restaurant up until late February. Ruth also said Young finished school at Highland High School and had been living with Hopkins for six months.

Julia's attorney wouldn't comment on his defense strategy moving forward, but he did say why Julia's bond amount is so high. "Two reasons they can keep someone or have a high bond: One is a flight risk, that they might leave the jurisdiction; and the other is that they're a risk to the safety of the community," attorney Larry Long explained.

The prosecutors in this case were not present today. As for the defendants, they are scheduled for a bond-reduction hearing next Thursday at 10 a.m.

E-mail: ngonzales@ksl.com

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