Man convicted of sex trafficking sentenced to life in prison

A sentence of life in prison has been handed a northern Illinois man found guilty last year of sex trafficking.

Samuel Nichols represented himself when he was tried in U.S. District Court on allegations he sold women for sex, while beating, impregnating and branding them. According to prosecutors, U.S. District Judge Virginia Kendall sentenced Nichols on Monday.

Prosecutors alleged the 34-year-old Nichols spent at least three years running a trafficking operation in which he sold several young women, including a girl as young as 13. Nichols made up to $2,000 a day, flashed his money on Instagram and funded a rap group.

Attorney James Graham wrote a brief on Nichols' behalf asking for a 15-year sentence. He said Nichols was "very, very immature at times while representing himself."