ND man convicted on sex, drug trafficking charges

Bismarck, North Dakota (AP) April 2012

A New Town man accused of operating a drug and prostitution ring has been convicted of sex trafficking, sexual abuse, drug trafficking and witness tampering.

Authorities say 22-year-old Dustin Morsette recruited minors and young adults to be part of a gang he described as the Black Disciples. Morsette allegedly forced gang members to distribute marijuana for him and engage in sex acts with him.

Court documents show that Morsette coerced an adult female into prostitution on the Fort Berthold Indian Reservation, and in Williston and Minot.

Attorneys for Morsette and the government declined to comment.

A jury found Morsette guilty on 16 counts. He faces a maximum penalty of life in prison. Sentencing is scheduled for July 30 in Bismarck.

Three other people pleaded guilty in the case.