Burlington County, NJ

Tactics Used

Reverse stings
Shaming
Auto seizure
Community service
Public education
Neighborhood action
SOAP orders
John school
Letters
Cameras
Web stings
License suspension

Burlington County, New Jersey is the largest county in the state by area, and is part of the Delaware Valley area and stretching across the state. Among its communities is Mount Laurel, a township of approximately 42,000 residents, situated in northeastern New Jersey east of Cherry Hill and Camden in Burlington County. Chronic prostitution activity, including the forced prostitution of minors, has been reported in the county for years.  For example, in 2017, a Burlington County couple was arrested for forcing a 17-year-old girl to engage in prostitution at area motels for their profit, posting nude photos in ads for the girl on backpage.com. They advertised her services as an “escort” and had her snort crystal methamphetamine with them while they had her working as a prostitute, according to the NJ Attorney General.  Among other problems are cases where sex buyers have been robbed while buying sex in Mount Laurel.

Although past efforts to reduce commercial sex sales in the county have usually targeted prostituted women over sex buyers, the Mount Laurel Police Department has conducted stings targeting johns. In July 2012, MLPD officers, with the support of MAGLOCLEN (the Middle Atlantic-Great Lakes Organized Crime Law Enforcement Network), conducted a web-based reverse sting wherein they posted an online ad suggesting prostitution with a phone number to call. Calls were answered by a police officer posing as a prostituted woman.  Appointments were then arranged at a hotel.  Following the sting, a MLPD representative reported that “the phone started ringing about 10 minutes after the ad went up. Within six hours, we arrested 11 men from South Jersey and one from Pennsylvania. And there were multiple other interested parties that we couldn’t get to.” The 11 men were all charged with engaging in prostitution and two were also charged with loitering.  The identities of the men arrested were released to the media.  Some news outlets posted the names and ages of the men, but others did not.

In February, 2021 authorities in South Jersey announced the arrest of fifteen people in a long-spanning crackdown on child pornography and predatory behavior.  Burlington County Prosecutor’s Office announced that among those arrested in the second phase of “Operation Safe Quarantine” was a 30-year-old youth pastor accused of blackmailing boys online into recording sexual videos of themselves; a 40-year-old man charged with secretly recorded a nude underage girl; a 72 year-old man who had child sexual abuse material, including images of infants and toddlers; and a 35-year-old suspect who had arranged to meet who he thought was a 13-year-old girl in a park for a sexual encounter after sending lewd videos of himself to the teen, when in reality he was in contact with an undercover agent. The New Jersey Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force had received nearly 2,400 tips between August and December, and the Burlington County Prosecutor’s Office High-Tech Crimes Unit had received 74 similar tips. One man from Palmyra was arrested and charged with 28 criminal counts including first-degree aggravated sexual assault and manufacturing child pornography. Prosecutors said the then-youth pastor at Harbor Baptist Church and teacher at the Harbor Baptist Academy in Hainesport would pose as a girl online in order to trick unsuspecting young boys on Snapchat and Instagram. Victims included 12-to-15-year-old boys in New Jersey, Pennsylvania and South Dakota.  He was charged with six counts of first-degree manufacturing child sexual abuse material, one count of first-degree aggravated sexual assault, five counts of second-degree distribution of child sexual abuse material, one count of second-degree sexual assault, six counts of third-degree possession of child sexual abuse material and six counts of third-degree endangering the welfare of a child. He also faces one count each of criminal sexual contact, obstruction and contempt, all fourth-degree crimes.

Key Partners

  • Burlington County Prosecutor’s Office
  • Mount Laurel Police Department
  • New Jersey Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force
  • MAGLOCLEN (Middle Atlantic-Great Lakes Organized Crime Law Enforcement Network)

Key Sources

Web Based Reverse Stings, Shaming:

Sex Trafficking and Child Sexual Exploitation in the Area:

Background on Prostitution in the Area:

  • “Man Facing Charge in Prostitution Probe,” Burlington County Times, November 2 2004.
  • “Ohio Woman Faces Prostitution Charge,” Burlington County Times, April 1 2008.
  • “Phila. Woman Charged with Prostitution,” Burlington County Times, July 2 2008.
  • “2 Women Charged with Prostitution,” Burlington County Times, August 8 2008.
  • “Police Charge Two with Prostitution,” Burlington County Times, October 10 2008.
  • “Man, Woman Picked up for Prostitution,” Medford Central Record, October 30 2008.
  • “Phila. Man Arrested on Prostitution Charges,” Burlington County Times, November 25 2008.
  • “Three Arrested at Mount Laurel Hotel,” Burlington County Times, January 11 2009.
  • “Prostitution Bust; 3 Women Charged with Prostitution,” Burlington County Times, February 3 2010.
  • “2 Women Charged with Prostitution,” Burlington County Times, March 31 2010.
  • “Woman Charged with Prostitution,” Burlington County Times, August 10 2010.
  • “Woman Charged with Prostitution,” Burlington County Times, August 17 2010.
  • “Two Arrested on Prostitution Charges,” Burlington County Times, October 1 2010.
  • “Woman Faces 2nd Prostitution Charge,” Burlington County Times, October 7 2010.
  • “Prostitution Bust Nets Five in Mount Laurel,” Burlington County Times, February 11 2011.
  • “Woman Charged with Prostitution,” Burlington County Times, February 16 2011.
  • “Atlantic City Man Charged with Prostitution in Mount Laurel,” Burlington County Times, March 16 2011.
  • “2 Women Accused in Prostitution Bust,” Burlington County Times, March 29 2011.
  • “More Prostitution Arrests Made,” Burlington County Times, March 30 2011.
  • “2 Women Accused of Prostitution,” Burlington County Times, April 27 2011.
  • “2 Women Charged in Prostitution Bust,” Burlington County Times, May 11 2011.
  • “Woman Charged with Prostitution,” Burlington County Times, May 17 2011.
  • “Man Charged with Promoting Prostitution,” Burlington County Times, June 30 2011.
  • “Woman Charged with Promoting Prostitution,” Burlington County Times, July 6 2011.
  • “Woman Charged with Prostitution for Second Time,” Burlington County Times, July 12 2011.
  • “Two Charged in Mount Laurel Prostitution Bust,” Burlington County Times, November 4 2011.
  • “Pa. Woman Charged with Prostitution,” Burlington County Times, December 13 2011.
  • “Woman Charged with Prostitution in Mount Laurel,” Burlington County Times, January 26 2012.
  • “Woman Charged with Prostitution in Mount Laurel,” Burlington County Times, February 12 2012.
  • “2 Arrested during Prostitution Bust at Mount Laurel Hotel,” Burlington County Times, April 29 2012.
  • “2 Men Charged with Prostitution in Mount Laurel,” Burlington County Times, June 17 2012.
  • “Woman Charged with Prostitution in Mount Laurel,” Burlington County Times, August 12 2012.
  • “Three People Charged after Prostitution Bust at Mount Laurel Hotel,” Burlington County Times, August 12 2012.
  • “Woman Charged with Engaging in Prostitution,” Burlington County Times, October 16 2012.
  • “Woman Accused of Prostitution in Mount Laurel,” Burlington County Times, October 26 2012.
  • “Police: Florida Woman Charged with Prostitution after Soliciting Undercover Officer,” Burlington County Times, November 13 2012.
  • “California Woman Charged with Prostitution,” Burlington County Times, December 18 2012.
  • “Mount Laurel Police Arrest 3 Women during Prostitution Busts,” Burlington County Times, December 23 2012.
  • “Mount Laurel Police Arrest Four Suspects on Prostitution Charges,” Burlington County Times, January 3 2013.
  • “Two Charged with Promoting Prostitution at Mount Laurel Hotel,” Burlington County Times, January 8 2013.
  • “Two Charged with Prostitution in Mount Laurel,” Burlington County Times, January 13 2013.
  • “Woman Charged with Engaging in Prostitution,” Burlington County Times, February 8 2013.
  • “New York Woman Charged with Engaging in Prostitution at Mount Laurel Spa,” Burlington County Times, May 9 2013.
  • “Two Charged in Prostitution Bust at Mount Laurel Hotel,” Burlington County Times, July 10 2013.
  • “Georgia Woman Accused of Engaging in Prostitution at Mount Laurel Hotel,” Burlington County Times, July 21 2013.
  • “Clementon Man Charged with Soliciting Prostitution in Mount Laurel,” Burlington County Times, October 4 2013.
  • “2 Charged with Prostitution at Mt. Laurel Hotels,” Burlington County Times, February 4 2014.
  • “Cops: Pennsylvania Man Arrested in Mt. Laurel Hotel on Prostitution Charges,” Bucks County Courier Times, October 9 2014.
  • “Woman Charged with Prostitution at Mount Laurel Hotel,” Burlington County Times, January 7 2015.
  • “Woman Charged with Engaging in Prostitution at Mount Laurel Hotel,” Burlington County Times, February 3 2015.

Documented Violence against Individuals Engaged in Prostitution in the Area:

State New Jersey
Type County
Population 445349
Location
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