GREENSBORO, N.C. — Aris Lamont Hines, 40, and Brandi Kauilani Thomason, 36, have filed a civil lawsuit against Alamance County Sheriff Terry Johnson.
The lawsuit was filed at the federal court in Greensboro on May 16, 2019, by Charlotte-based lawyer Mark A. Burts II.
The couple now live in Bell County, Texas.
Also listed as defendants are former sheriff's spokesman Randy Jones and 10 unnamed deputies.
Court documents obtained by WFMY showed the couple made claims of slander, harassment, malicious prosecution, illegal arrest, and various civil rights violations by the Alamance County Sheriff. They are seeking more than $75,000 in damages.
In May 2016, charges were brought against Hines and Thomason after the enrollment of a student-athlete into the Alamance-Burlington School System was flagged as suspicious.
The couple was accused of being involved in a multi-state human trafficking ring involving children, some of whom were from foreign countries.
According to Alamance County Sheriff Terry Johnson, Hines and Thomason had used fraudulent documents to enroll Jonathan Kingsley, a student from Nigeria, into the Eastern Alamance High athletic program. The student played basketball and football while enrolled at the school.
He said False documents from Nigeria and false custody agreements were presented at different places in the county. Johnson also said the student was used for the possibility of future profit and for his athletic ability in a scheme separately known as Athletic Trafficking.
However, no trafficking-related charges were brought against the couple.
Kingsley went on to play football for Syracuse University where he is currently enrolled.
In July 2018, the felony charges of common law obstruction of justice and obtaining property by false pretense were dropped by the Alamance County District Attorney's Office.
Hines still faces similar charges in Robeson County and will appear in court on June 3.
Sheriff Johnson was out of the office Thursday, but someone sent this statement on his behalf: "We are aware of a suit but have not been served." They also referred us to the County attorney for further.