Edison, also known as Edison Township, is located in central New Jersey’s Middlesex County. The township has a population of nearly 100,000. Documented cases of prostitution and sex trafficking have occurred in the city.
For example, in November 2013, a state grand jury indicted a township man on first-degree charges of human trafficking, kidnapping and racketeering for allegedly enslaving women in a prostitution ring through violence and threats of violence, according to the Attorney General’s Office. The alleged pimp (trafficker) was also indicted with another person on charges of racketeering conspiracy, receiving stolen property and promoting prostitution. The charges stem from an investigation by the New Jersey Division of Criminal Justice and the Edison Police Department. The found young women in various locations, including the Cleveland, Ohio, area and brought them to New Jersey to enslave them in prostitution.
In 2011, due to complaints about prostitution received from the community, the Edison Police Department executed their first reverse sting operation, resulting in six arrests. In the three months leading up to this sting, 20 arrests had been made on charges of prostitution and promoting prostitution, but when this didn’t seem to impact the problem, police decided to switch their focus to the demand side of the commercial sex market and arrest johns. As the majority of the prostitution is ‘indoors’ in Edison, the sting operations are web-based. Since the first reverse sting in 2011, the Edison Division of Police has continued to use this method as a way of reducing the demand for prostitution.
- Web-Based Reverse Stings with Shaming:
- Sex Trafficking and Child Sexual Exploitation in the Area:
- “Alleged Pimp Indicted in Prostitution Ring in Edison,” Edison Sentinel, November 20 2013.
- “Edison Man Pleads Guilty to Luring, Coercing Woman into Prostitution Ring,” Newark Star-Ledger, February 10 2014.
- “Edison Woman to Serve 10 Years in Prison for Operating Prostitution Ring,” Newark Star-Ledger, September 30 2014.
- “NJ Corrections Officer Had Sex with 15-Year-Old Girl He Met Online, Cops Say,” WKXW-FM 101.5, January 30 2016.