The City Attorney’s Office is suing a 75-year-old man for allegedly allowing gang members to use a South Los Angeles apartment complex he owns for sex-trafficking and other unlawful purposes.
The Los Angeles Superior Court nuisance-abatement suit was filed against Robert Clayton Jr., identified in the complaint as the owner of the property in the 5600 block of Western Avenue in the Harvard Park neighborhood. There are two churches and at least two elementary schools within 1,000 feet of the property, according to the suit filed Dec. 5.
Clayton could not be immediately reached for comment.
According to the suit, members of the gang consider the six-unit complex their stronghold and use and sell drugs on site. Many have firearms, the complaint alleges.
“The property also has a reputation among law enforcement as being used by the gang for their sex trafficking operations involving, among others, juveniles designated as (sexually exploited children) by the … LAPD,’’ the suit says.
Clayton was present Feb. 28 when officers recovered narcotics, a scale and a firearm, according to the lawsuit, which alleges he “is either unable or unwilling to abate the nuisance activity at the property.’’
Clayton was warned by the city in 2015 to make needed repairs to the property by 2016, but he failed to do so, according to the City Attorney’s Office.
The suit asks that Clayton bring the property up to proper standards, install a video system accessible to the LAPD over the Internet and no longer allow alleged illegal activity at the apartments.