A Utah truck driver with a reported obsession for vampires pleaded guilty to kidnapping and keeping women as sex slaves.
Just days before he was set to go on trial, Timothy Jay Vafeades, 56, in an agreement with prosecutors, pleaded guilty in federal court to two counts of transportation for illegal sexually activity, according to KSL News.
Two kidnapping charges were dropped as part of the deal. Vafeades had previously admitted to transportation of child pornography.
Dubbed the “vampire trucker,” Vafeades held women captive in his truck, the “Twilight Express,” sexually and physically abused them and sharpened their teeth with a power tool, according to the charges.
The Murray man wore bracelets on his wrists that he called “slave bracelets” and would hit his victims with the bracelets if they didn’t follow his commands, court documents say. He owned a pair of dentures that were carved to make the two front teeth appear as fangs, prosecutors said.
His alleged trail of abuse ended in November 2013 in Clay County, Minnesota, when a state trooper realized that the female passenger in Vafeades’ semitrailer had a lifetime protection order issued against him in Florida.
Vafeades’ guilty plea involved two victims in 2012 and 2013. But court documents say there were at least six victims and the abuse goes back as far as 1994. Vafeades was married to four of the victims and one was a relative, according to court documents.
One woman told investigators that Vafeades took all of her identification, cut and dyed her hair, sexually assaulted her, forced her to shower with him, refused to let her look at other people, filed her teeth and hit her with a belt. She escaped after six months while the truck stopped in California in 2008, court documents say.
Vafeades’ public defenders and prosecutors agreed to a 20-year prison term, which U.S. District Judge David Nuffer said he intends to impose, KSL reported. Assistant U.S. attorney Trina Higgins hoped the guilty plea would bring closure to the victims, who would be spared from testifying at a trial.
“That’s not something I can comment on, but if they wish to speak at sentencing, they’ll be allowed to, and I hope that we’ll hear some of their voices,” Higgins said.
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