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Brunswick is a town in Cumberland County, Maine. It is located on the southeastern coast of the state, and its population is about 20,000. Prostitution and sex trafficking have been well documented problems throughout the county for decades, including in the city of Brunswick. For example, in March, 2014, police learned of a 19 year old homeless woman had been forced into commercial sexual exploitation by a sex trafficking operation based in Cumberland County. She had been sold for sex in several Maine counties, and fled when she learned a trafficker in Boston had offered to buy her for $30,000. Her traffickers were arrested and each charged with two counts of aggravated sex trafficking, and each faced up to 10 years in prison on each charge. In another case, a trucker was arrested in 2018 in Cumberland for arranging to purchase access to a minor for sexual abuse.
Among the methods of combating the wide range of problems associated with the illicit commercial sex trade are those intended to combat consumer level demand. For example, in March, 2022, police arrested six men during a prostitution sting in the Brunswick area. The identities of the arrested sex buyers were publicly disclosed in news reports. All six men were charged with “engaging a prostitute,” a Class E misdemeanor. Class E crimes are punishable by up to six months in jail and a fine of up to $1,000. The six men charged had court dates scheduled for June, 2022. The arrests were the result of a joint operation involving officers from Brunswick, South Portland, Gorham and Falmouth, as well as the Greater Portland Coalition Against Sex Trafficking and Exploitation and agents from the Department of Homeland Security.
- Brunswick Police Department
- South Portland Police Department
- Gorham Police Department
- Falmouth Police Department
- Greater Portland Coalition Against Sex Trafficking and Exploitation
- Department of Homeland Security
Reverse Stings, Identity Disclosure:
Background on Prostitution and Sex Trafficking in the Area:
- https://bangordailynews.com/news/11-arrested-in-prostitution-sting/ (2011)
- http://www.pressherald.com/news/Gorham_police_say_woman_feared_sale_to pimp (2014)
- https://bangordailynews.com/lewiston-woman-charged-with-prostitution-at-brunswick-motel/ (2014)
- http://www.sunjournal.com/news/maine/3-suspects-face-sex-trafficking-charges (2014)
- http://bangordailynews.com/sex-trafficking-survivors-tell-their-stories-ahead-of-maine-conference/ (2014)
- https://patch.com/trucker-charged-prostitution-minor (2018)
- https://wgme.com/8-charged-with-engaging-a-prostitute-after-sting-operation-in-lewiston (2020)
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