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United States v. Cook

United States Court of Appeals, Eighth Circuit

April 9, 2015

United States of America, Plaintiff - Appellee
v.
Bradley Cook, Defendant - Appellant

Submitted November 14, 2014

Page 984

Appeal from United States District Court for the Western District of Missouri - Kansas City.

For United States of America, Plaintiff - Appellee: Paul S. Becker, Assistant U.S. Attorney, Teresa Ann Moore, Assistant U.S. Attorney, U.S. ATTORNEY'S OFFICE, Kansas City, MO.

For Bradley Cook, Defendant - Appellant: Carter Collins Law, LAW & SCHRIENER, Saint Louis, MO.

Before BYE, SHEPHERD, and KELLY, Circuit Judges.

OPINION

Page 985

SHEPHERD, Circuit Judge.

Bradley Cook pled guilty to one count of commercial sex trafficking by force, fraud, or coercion, in violation of 18 U.S.C. § § 1591(a) and (b)(1),[1] 1594, and 2. Before entering his plea, he filed a motion to dismiss this count, arguing 18 U.S.C. § 1591 was unconstitutionally vague as applied to him, a purchaser of commercial sex. As part of his plea agreement, Cook retained the right to appeal any denial of his motion to dismiss. The district court[2] denied the motion to dismiss, finding the statute was not unconstitutionally vague as applied to Cook. We affirm.

I. Background

As Cook moved to dismiss on the grounds that section 1591 is " unconstitutionally vague as applied to the allegations in the indictment, we consider the facts as alleged in the indictment." United States v. Birbragher, 603 F.3d 478, 481 (8th Cir. 2010). Cook, a resident of St. Louis, Missouri, was charged in a superseding indictment with co-defendants Edward Bagley, Marilyn Bagley, and Michael Stokes. In December 2002, the Bagleys, a married couple, convinced a 16-year-old female (the female victim, hereinafter " FV" ) to come live with them in their trailer home in a wooded area in Lebanon, Missouri. The Bagleys promised FV, who had a troubled childhood in foster care homes and who they believed to have " mental deficiencies," that they would give her " a great life" and help her achieve her dreams of becoming a model and dancer. After FV moved in, Mr. Bagley started a sexual relationship with her, and the Bagleys together began to " groom and coerce" FV to become a " sex slave." In February 2004, shortly after FV's 18th birthday, Mr. Bagley had her sign a " sex slavery contract," which he told FV legally bound her to be his " sex slave" indefinitely. The Bagleys then began a course of severe physical, psychological, and sexual abuse and torture of FV.

Mr. Bagley posted live video streams and pictures of the torture sessions online and advertised that FV would engage in sexual acts and could be tortured during

Page 986

live online sessions or in person. Cook began viewing the video streams and pictures in 2004 and communicating with Bagley via telephone and the Internet. Cook sexually tortured women in his residence in St. Louis and sent Bagley pictures and advice on those methods so Bagley could apply them against FV. In January 2006, Cook began traveling to Bagley's trailer in Lebanon to engage in vaginal, anal, and oral sex with and sexual torture of FV. Cook witnessed or participated in acts of sexual torture of FV " including, but not limited to, flogging, whipping, shocking, choking, piercing, skewering, sewing, stapling, and electrocuting." In some instances, Bagley would chain FV up before torturing her for Cook. During these sessions, Cook witnessed Bagley refuse to allow FV to use her " safe word" and ignore her pleas that he stop abusing her. Cook gave Bagley a hard drive containing sadomasochism and torture videos, including a video showing how to bury someone alive, which Bagley used to threaten FV so she would continue to submit to his demands. Cook, ...


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