An Edgewater couple with a youngster in their home made a sex slave out of a woman whom they held captive there, authorities said.
Tyrone T. Washington, 33, who is unemployed, and 28-year-old dancer Shameka M. Lambert were arrested after an investigation by Edgewater police and members of the Bergen County prosecutor’s Special Victims Unit and Special Investigations Squad, Acting Bergen County Prosecutor Dennis Calo said Monday.
Edgewater police got a report over the weekend that the victim “was being forced to engage in prostitution” by the couple, who were “holding her against her will for approximately 12 days,” Calo said.
Authorities also discovered that “a minor was living with Washington and Lambert in the residence where the victim was being held,” he said.
Both were being held in the Bergen County Jail pending a detention hearing Wednesday on a first-degree charge of human trafficking and second-degree child endangerment count, the prosecutor said.
Prison terms for human trafficking convictions in New Jersey were strengthened five years ago -- it's 20 years to life in prison for anyone convicted of first-degree human trafficking.
They must serve a minimum of 20 years before being eligible for parole, under Section 2C:13-8 of the New Jersey Code of Criminal Justice .
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