PRINCE GEORGE’S COUNTY, Md. (WJZ) — A major sex trafficking ring operating in Maryland for years is busted. Now, three people face time in federal prison, accused of victimizing dozens of women. Some of them were just teenagers, WJZ’s Meghan McCorkell reports.
It was an undercover sting in Prince George’s County that ultimately led to the indictment of the alleged ringleaders of a human trafficking organization.READ MORE: COVID-19 In Maryland: 974 New Cases Reported, Positivity Increasing
Investigators say Rashid Mosby, Terra Perry and Joshua Jones operated a company they called “Pink Pleasure Entertainment.”
According to a grand jury indictment obtained by WJZ, the three lured young women, saying they were looking for “model types” on the controversial website Backpage.
In an ad, the company claims to be a “reputable escort agency,” with clients making “$400 to $1,000 daily.”
But when the girls — some as young as 15 — came to the area, they were forced to become sex slaves.
“The young women in these cases do not understand truly the dangerous nature of this particular enterprise,” said Angela Alsobrooks, Prince George’s County State’s Attorney.
In one case, Mosby is accused of dislocating a woman’s shoulder and then abandoning her without money or credit cards.READ MORE: Maryland Ranks No. 7 Among Most Diverse States
The alleged sex trafficking ring operated from 2013 to 2015, crossing county lines in Maryland and Virginia.
Officials say the encounters took place in hotels and motels across the region, including in Baltimore.
“Unfortunately, human trafficking is far more prevalent than I think we even care to believe,” said Adam Rosenberg, Baltimore Child Abuse Center.
Rosenberg says it’s a crime that’s close to home.
“Human trafficking isn’t people coming in from container ships from overseas, but it’s happening to kids and adults and people who are right here in Maryland,” he said.
Now, investigators say they’ve caught three people at the center of an extensive operation.
Only four victims are named in the indictment. Prosecutors say dozens more were too afraid to cooperate with the investigation.MORE NEWS: WATCH LIVE: Anne Arundel County Officials Provide COVID-19 Update
The suspects now face decades behind bars.