“The defendants in this case admitted to forcing a young girl to perform sexual acts with various men against her will,” Queens DA Richard Brown said in a prepared statement. “Sex trafficking is a serious and disturbing crime that my office continues to vigorously pursue and prosecute.”
Brown noted that the defendants’ guilty pleas bring the number of sex trafficking convictions obtained by his office to eight, since state legislation strengthening penalties for the crime and providing assistance to victims took effect on Nov. 1, 2007.
The 14-year-old victim met with defendant Harrington on April 19, and he took her to a residence located at 135-38 123 St. in Jamaica, where she then met Gould.
The two defendants told the victim to engage in prostitution acts at the Jamaica home between April 19 and April 26 and to give all of her earnings from her customers to them.
When the victim told Harrington that she no longer wanted to work for them, he struck her about the face and body, the DA said. The victim managed to escape from the house on April 26 and called a relative, who then called police.
More than 12 million people worldwide are victims of forced labor or forced prostitution, according to a 2010 report by the U.S. State Department — two million of them children and 80 percent women.