WASHINGTON, D.C. (5/11/13) – A federal jury today convicted Jeremy Naughton, a/k/a “Jerms Black,” age 32, of Brooklyn, New York, on charges related to sex trafficking, including transporting individuals to engage in prostitution, kidnapping, and using a gun during the conspiracy to commit sex trafficking.
The jury verdict was announced by United States Attorney for the District of Maryland Rod J. Rosenstein; Special Agent in Charge Stephen E. Vogt of the Federal Bureau of Investigation; and Chief J. Thomas Manger of the Montgomery County Police Department.
“Jeremy Naughton kidnapped young women, held them against their will, and used violence, sexual abuse, and threats to compel them to work for him as prostitutes,” said Rod J. Rosenstein.
According to evidence presented at the 14-day trial, from January 2009 to the fall of 2010, Naughton and his long-time friend, Charles Anderson, targeted female prostitutes between the ages of 19 and 28 who were working without a pimp to force and coerce the women to work for them. They contacted women who posted ads on websites for prostitution services and arranged to meet them in hotel rooms, masquerading as a prospective client. Naughton and Anderson then assaulted and threatened the victims with a handgun and/or physical violence to force them to work for them. They stole the women’s cell phones, identification, room keys, and personal computers to prevent them from communicating with others and controlled the victims through physical assault, humiliation, confinement, and threats. Naughton transported the women between Maryland, New York, and other states to engage in prostitution.
For example, in the summer of 2009, Naughton enticed a woman to come to an apartment in Brooklyn, where he imprisoned her and invited others to sexually abuse her. In September 2009, Naughton forced open the door of a woman’s hotel room, stole her cell phone and identification, and detained her while demanding that she work for him as a prostitute. In October 2009 in his apartment, Naughton displayed a handgun, struck a woman, choked her, and forced her to perform sex. Between October 25 and November 11, 2009, Naughton drove two women from his apartment to Oxon Hill, where he demanded that they rent hotel rooms for commercial sex. In December 2009, Naughton violently assaulted a woman in a hotel in Montgomery County, Maryland. On February 8, 2010, Naughton forced a woman from her hotel room in Silver Spring, Maryland, forced her to stay with him at the Brooklyn apartment and sexually abused her before attempting to prostitute her from a hotel in Long Island, New York. In June 2010, Naughton intimidated another woman by snapping the neck of her dog with his hands. In September 2010, Naughton entered another victim’s hotel room, demanded that she work for him, stole her cell phone and money, and transported her to his apartment, where he forced her to perform oral sex.
Naughton shared his apartment in Brooklyn with Anderson. According to Anderson’s plea agreement, the victims stayed in the Naughton’s room, where Anderson sometimes overheard Naughton physically assaulting them and forcing them to perform sex acts. In the spring of 2010, Anderson agreed to monitor the victims while Naughton traveled for approximately six hours in search of an additional prostitute in Maryland. Anderson helped Naughton locate victims who had escaped. He also knew that Naughton had a .9mm pistol and a larger sub-machine gun in the apartment, along with corresponding ammunition.
Naughton faces a maximum sentence of life in prison for conspiring to commit sex trafficking and for kidnapping; a minimum of 15 years and a maximum of life in prison for each of four counts of sex trafficking; a maximum of 10 years in prison on each of six counts of transporting an individual to engage in prostitution; seven years in prison, consecutive to any other sentence, for possession of a firearm in furtherance of a crime of violence. U.S. District Judge J. Frederick Motz has scheduled sentencing for August 15, 2013 at 9:30 a.m.
Charles Anderson, a/k/a “Chuck Corners,” a/k/a “Yowzer,” age 26, of Brooklyn, New York, previously pleaded guilty to conspiracy to commit sex trafficking and is scheduled to be sentenced on June 14, 2013 at 2:15 p.m.
The case was investigated by the Maryland Child Exploitation Task Force, with assistance from the Maryland Human Trafficking Task Force, which was formed in 2007 to discover and rescue victims of human trafficking while identifying and prosecuting offenders. Members of both task forces include federal, state and local law enforcement. The Maryland Human Trafficking Task Force also includes victim service providers and local community members. For more information about the Maryland Human Trafficking Task Force, please visit www.justice.gov/usao/md/Human-Trafficking/index.html.
United States Attorney Rod J. Rosenstein commended the FBI’s Baltimore, New York, and Las Vegas, Nevada Field Offices and the Montgomery County Police Department for their work in the investigation and thanked the Montgomery County State’s Attorney’s Office, the Kings County (Brooklyn, NY) District Attorney’s Office, the Department of Homeland Security, and the New York City Police Department for their assistance. Mr. Rosenstein thanked Assistant U.S. Attorneys Mark W. Crooks and Paul E. Budlow, who are prosecuting the case.
Information provided by the Federal Bureau of Investigation
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