IN NEIGHBORING SOMERSET NEW YORK COUPLE CHARGED WITH HUMAN TRAFFICKING OF A MINOR FROM NEW JERSEY

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Somerset County Prosecutor Michael H. Robertson, Somerset County Prosecutor’s Office Chief of County Detectives John W. Fodor, and Chief of Police Matthew Donnelly of the Elkton, Maryland Police Department announced the arrests of Joneigh A. Tempro, age 22, of First Place, Brentwood, New York and Joshua M. Stewart, age 28, of North Thompson Drive, Bay Shore, New York.

 

Prosecutor Robertson stated last month a Somerset County municipal police department received information that a 16 year old female, whom detectives are only disclosing as a resident of Somerset County, was engaging in prostitution activity under the direction of defendants Joneigh A. Tempro and Joshua M. Stewart in hotels located throughout Somerset County.

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Prosecutor Robertson stated that detectives assigned to the Somerset County Prosecutor’s Office Major Crimes Unit along with detectives from the Child Abuse and Sex Crimes Unit immediately initiated an investigation into the allegations.  Their investigation revealed that defendants Tempro and Stewart had knowingly promoted the 16 year old victim to engage in sexual activity with various clients in exchange for U.S. currency.

 

On May 10, 2017 detectives from the Somerset County Prosecutor’s office, along with detectives from the Elkton Police department responded to a residence in Elkton, Maryland. The residence had been identified by Special Agents with the Federal Bureau of Investigation as the location where the defendants were staying. At approximately 11:00 a.m. Joneigh A. Tempro and Joshua M. Stewart were arrested without incident while at the residence. A search of the house yielded items pertinent to the investigation.
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Prosecutor Robertson stated that the defendants were each charged with first degree, promoting prostitution (involving a child under the age of 18) and first degree, human trafficking (promoting a child under the age of 18 to engage in sexual activity).

 

Both defendants were lodged in the Cecil County Detention Center located in Elkton, Maryland pending extradition proceedings back to New Jersey.

 

Prosecutor Robertson and Chief Fodor are asking that any additional victims who may have been prompted to engage in prostitution by defendants Tempro and Stewart to contact to Somerset County detectives at (908) 231-7100.

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