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Fuquay-Varina is a town in southern Wake County, North Carolina. Its population is roughly 30,000, and it is located in the central portion of the state. Prostitution and sex trafficking have been well-documented in the city, including sex trafficking of minors and online exploitation. To combat demand for commercial sex activity, multi-agency reverse stings have been conducted in the area.
In October 2005, charges were filed against three people for “recruiting” women and girls as young as 14 to work in three brothels where they were then kept under “lock and key.” A four-count indictment charged the defendants for engaging in sex trafficking by bringing women from New York, New Jersey, and Maryland and finding girls to work at brothels in Wake and Harnett counties. According to the indictment, the sex ring operated for seven years, until August 2004, running brothels in Raleigh, Fuquay-Varina, and at a mobile home park in Lillington. The federal indictment described how the defendants recruited an unidentified 14-year-old girl to prostitute herself, and how one defendant paid a minor to work in the Fuquay-Varina brothel in June 2003.
In May 2022, a one-day reverse sting operation was carried out by multiple Wake County and central North Carolina agencies, resulting in two men charged for soliciting sex acts for money, the Fuquay-Varina Police Department said in a press release. Both suspects were targeted as purchasers of sex acts for money, and had solicited sex acts from an undercover officer. Fuquay-Varina investigators were joined by police from Cary, Apex and Fayetteville for what investigators called “Operation Catching John.” The two men were each charged with one count of solicitation of prostitution, and were given Wake County District Court dates and were released at the scene. The operation was part of a collaborative effort to remain proactive in combatting human trafficking and prostitution in the Town of Fuquay-Varina, the release also said. The release did not say why the men were released and not given a bond.
- Fuquay-Varina Police Department
- Cary Police Department
- Apex Police Department
- Fayetteville Police Department
Reverse Sting, Identity Disclosure:
- https://www.cbs17.com/wake-county-news/2-purchasers-get-prostitution-charges-in-wake-county-operation/ (2022)
- https://www.wral.com/fuquay-varina-police-charge-2-men-in-undercover-human-trafficking-operation (2022)
- https://restorationnewsmedia.com/wilson-man-charged-in-prostitution-sting (2022)
Background on Local Sex Trafficking, Prostitution:
- https://alt.true-crime.narkive.com/three-charged-with-forcing-women-to-work-in-brothels (2005)
- https://www.wral.com/durham-officers-arrest-24-people-in-two-day-sting (2008)
- https://abc11.com/human-trafficking-apex-crime-sex-crimes (2019)
- https://abc11.com/human-trafficking-sex-child-prostitution/ (2019) https://www.dconc.gov/News (2020)
- https://www.wnct.com/fuquay-varina-couple-charged-in-connection-with-child-sex-assaults-authorities-say/ (2022)
- https://wcti12.com/us-attorney-higlights-human-trafficking-convictions-including-high-profile-local-case (2022)