BUFFALO, N.Y. (WIVB) — The leader of a sex trafficking and drug conspiracy ring pleaded guilty to multiple charges, the U.S. Attorney announced Monday.

65-year-old Lairon Graham of Buffalo admitted to coercing four victims to engage in sexual activity by exploiting their addictions by providing the victims with crack cocaine or heroin, using physical violence or threats of it to get the victims to engage in sexual activity with him. This is said to have included beating one victim on a near-daily basis. Authorities say this occurred between 2013 and August 2021.

In addition, between June 2020 and spring 2021, Graham organized a drug conspiracy out of a residence in Swinburn Street in Buffalo, moving it to a residence on Liddell Street in the spring of 2021.

Between January and August 2021, Graham lived on Davey Street in Buffalo, where a search warrant was conducted that turned up fentanyl, crack cocaine, cash and drug paraphernalia. A gun was also found at the residence.

Authorities say that Graham was the primary source of heroin and fentanyl for multiple individuals.

Graham was the last of 10 people to be convicted in this case. He pleaded guilty to conspiracy with intent to distribute,  and to distribute, 400 grams or more of fentanyl as well as sex trafficking by force or coercion. He faces 15 years to life in prison and a $20 million fine when he is sentenced on September 11.

“These arrests and convictions bring an end to a level of violence that plagued the Broadway area of the City of Buffalo for far too long,” Buffalo Police Commissioner Joseph Gramaglia said. “Human trafficking, drug dealing, and shootings brought on a significant response from the Buffalo Police Department in partnership with law enforcement of all levels.”

Aidan Joly joined the News 4 staff in 2022. He is a graduate of Canisius College. You can see more of his work here.