A Toledo pastor and another man were arrested today by the FBI and held without bond on accusations they were involved in the sex trafficking of children.
The Rev. Cordell Jenkins, 46, and Anthony Haynes, 37, were taken into custody early today at their Toledo residences without incident, according to the FBI.
U.S. District Court Magistrate Judge James Knepp ordered the two men remain in the Lucas County jail until their detention hearings Thursday.
Both Mr. Jenkins and Mr. Haynes are accused of knowingly recruiting, enticing, harboring, and transporting people they knew were younger than 18 years old to engage in commercial sex acts, federal officials said.
Reverend Jenkins is the founder and pastor for Abundant Life Ministries, 5025 Glendale Ave., according to the church’s website. The church website lists Lucas County Administrator Laura Lloyd-Jenkins as Mr. Jenkins' wife. A Lucas County official confirmed today Mr. Jenkins is married to Ms. Lloyd-Jenkins.
Mr. Jenkins is also being charged with sexual exploitation of children while Mr. Haynes is being charged with obstruction of justice. Both men have their initial appearance in U.S. District Court today.
“We have charged two individuals, but not with any affiliation with the church,” said FBI spokesperson Vicki Anderson.
Old Orchard neighbors said the FBI searched a home today in the 2400 block of Barrington Drive. County records list Ms. Lloyd-Jenkins as the owner of the home. She could not be reached for comment, and a resident motioned for a Blade reporter to leave the property.
Ms. Anderson said the FBI received information a few weeks ago regarding allegations of the sexual misconduct involving minors and began an investigation. The crimes are alleged to have occurred over a few years, she said.
Ms. Anderson said she could not provide the victims' ages or where they were from. Law enforcement officials arrested the two men about 9 a.m. at their residences.
Star Academy of Toledo, a kindergarten through 8th grade public charter school, shares a space with the church. The school was not placed on lock down, but bus pick up was moved from the east side of the building to the west side, where police vehicles were located.
“As a parent, I would be concerned, but all of my babies here in school are safe,” said principal Vincent Riccardi. “None of the staff in the church have anything to do with our kids. We don’t do programs with them. We have no affiliation with Abundant Life Church, other than we happen to share the building, but they’re not in our area.”
Ms. Lloyd-Jenkins is listed as the secretary on the board of trustees for Lucas County Children Services, according to the child protection agency website.
Ms. Lloyd-Jenkins has been on approved leave from her county administrator position since Wednesday to attend to a health-related family matter in California, said County Commissioner President Pete Gerken.
Mr. Gerken said county representatives are "outraged and cooperative," and will work with the FBI if asked.
He said the county has a clear stance against sex trafficking based on previous policies and statements.
"If this is true it is indefensible for Pastor Jenkins," he said. "Our county employee remains a county employee... [She], to our knowledge, is not charged and complicit."
Mr. Gerken said county officials will continue to monitor the situation. He said it was too soon to comment on whether she would be removed from her Children Services board position.
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