Man guilty in Millersville sex ring

Brought at least 12 women to Maryland to serve as prostitutes

An Ohio man has pleaded guilty in federal court to operating a sex-trafficking business out of a Millersville apartment, admitting he and three other men brought at least 12 young women to Maryland earlier this year to work as prostitutes.

Richard Johnson, 22, of Chillicothe, Ohio, faces the possibility of life in prison when he is sentenced Feb. 12 in U.S. District Court in Baltimore.

Federal prosecutors are still pursuing cases against the other three men, one of whom was a soldier at Fort George G. Meade.

Spc. Craig Allen Corey II, 23, of both Millersville and Fort Meade, Robert Harris, 21, and Jacob Tyler, 22, both of Ohio, face numerous charges related to the operation of the prostitution business out of Corey’s former apartment on Millwright Court.

According to a plea agreement entered Thursday, Johnson and his co-conspirators used Craigslist, MySpace, YouTube and other social networking Web sites between January and April to entice at least 12 women to come to Maryland and work as prostitutes.

Prosecutors said Johnson directly recruited at least two of the women and helped photograph them in various stages of undress to promote the business online. He also stood guard when men visited the prostitutes, brandishing a handgun and even shooting it on one occasion inside the apartment.

About 15 men visited the prostitutes every week, prosecutors said.

The proceeds were split among the four men and the prostitutes, allowing the men to buy drugs, jewelry, clothing and accessories for their cars. According to court documents, the men posted videos on the Internet where they boasted about the money they were making in Maryland.

Johnson also admitted he sold ecstasy and other narcotics in

Maryland and Ohio, prosecutors said.

County police initially cracked the sex ring in April after responding to an advertisement on Craigslist that offered “companionship” at the rate of $80 for 15 minutes.

Detectives raided the apartment April 24 after an undercover officer paid a woman $100 to have sex with him. During the raid, the detectives found a 16-year-old girl who said Corey had forced her into prostitution.

Police charged Corey and Johnson shortly after the raid. A federal grand jury filed additional charges in September against all four alleged conspirators.

source: http://www.hometownannapolis.com/news/top/2009/12/06-42/Man-guilty-in-Millersville-sex-ring.html

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