Two men trafficked women for sex out of a Lantana motel. How the courts resolved the case

A gavel sits atop a book.

WEST PALM BEACH — Two men accused of forcing women to work as prostitutes in a Palm Beach County human trafficking ring had their cases resolved this month with separate plea agreements.

Floyd "Fish Grease" Lopez, 39, received a sentence of 15 years in prison on April 13 after he pleaded guilty to five counts of human trafficking in addition to charges of false imprisonment and aggravated battery. The plea came during a hearing before Circuit Judge Scott Suskauer, and four days before the case was set to go to trial.

On April 18, co-defendant Demertius Wells, 37, who agreed to cooperate with the state's prosecution of Lopez, received a five-year sentence after he pleaded guilty before Suskauer to five counts of human trafficking and one count each of sexual battery and deriving proceeds from prostitution.

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A third co-defendant, Nicholas Sukie, 23, completed his time in prison in February after being sentenced to five years in February 2022. Sukie pleaded to two counts of labor trafficking and one count each of false imprisonment and deriving proceeds from prostitution.

In 2017, Palm Beach County formed a task force to crack down on human tracking, described under state and federal law as the exploitation of another person for labor, domestic servitude or commercial sexual activity through the use of fraud, force or coercion.

Court records show that nearly 30 people in Palm Beach County have been convicted on either state or federal trafficking charges at trial or through plea agreements since the task force's formation.

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At the time of the arrests in 2018, investigators alleged that Lopez rented a motel room in Lantana and arranged for women under his control to be driven to "dates" with clients at homes stretching from Jupiter to Broward County.

During a prostitution appointment, Lopez instructed Sukie and Wells to take other women to separate rooms to keep them quiet, authorities said. Sukie and Wells guarded the women at gunpoint to prevent them from leaving.

The judge credited Lopez with nearly five years — 1,789 days — of time served as he awaited trial. Suskauer also credited Wells with 1,792 days of time served.

Julius Whigham II is a criminal justice and public safety reporter for The Palm Beach Post. You can reach him at and follow him on Twitter at@JuliusWhigham. Help support our work: Subscribe today.

This article originally appeared on Palm Beach Post: Two men sentenced in Palm Beach County human trafficking operation