From a brick house in a quiet neighborhood... a three-star hotel near a swanky mall
Human trafficking has infiltrated the most ordinary of surroundings in Maryland
Human Trafficking
in Maryland
A Capital News
Service Investigation
The Brothel Next Door
Human trafficking abounds in Maryland, yet few are convicted
The Trafficked: Unseen, Uncounted

Maryland officials pledged three years ago to improve anti-trafficking efforts by collecting and sharing evidence of the problem from “every part of government.” They never followed through.

So Capital News Service did its own examination. Reporters pored over thousands of pages of police records, prosecution data and court files. The investigation found widespread evidence of human trafficking but few convictions.

Baltimore City:
Zero Convictions
City prosecutors have not won a single human trafficking conviction in two years. A city firefighter who sold homeless women out of a warehouse was convicted in federal court.
The Trap: A Victim's Testimony
In audio excerpts of her court testimony, a teenage mother explains how a “cute” stranger’s interest in her problems led to being trafficked out of a Towson hotel.
The Crime:
A Misdemeanor
Maryland has some of the lightest penalties in the nation for human trafficking of adults -- and traffickers have taken notice. A bill to increase penalties died in Annapolis this year.
Langley Park:
Unwelcome Neighbors
Police have trouble finding brothels in a sea of apartment complexes that are home to a large immigrant community.
The Help: Slavery at Home

A preteen girl from Cameroon is lured to Silver Spring on the promise of a good education and a dream of marrying "The Fresh Prince of Bel Air."

She winds up a household slave, court records say, enduring routine beatings and long hours of work without pay or schooling.