MAYS LANDING- Following a two month long investigation between the Township of Hamilton Police Department and the FBI’s Child Exploitation Task Force, El Joshua, 36, has been charged in connection to human trafficking, Atlantic County Prosecutor Damon G. Tyner announced.
Officials say Joshua, of Pearce Road in Mays Landing, was arrested without incident on February 21, and charged with multiple counts of Human Trafficking, Criminal Restraint, and Possession of a Weapon for an Unlawful Purpose.
“Human trafficking is a serious problem that plagues our community. Whether through prostitution or other forms of forced labor, such as restaurants and nail salons, we as a community must recognize the signs and report suspected incidents to law enforcement immediately. I thank our partners at the FBI’s Child Exploitation Task Force and the Township of Hamilton Police Department for their dedication and work on this investigation,” Atlantic County Prosecutor Damon G. Tyner said.
Joshua is charged with the following offenses:
5 counts of Human Trafficking
2 counts of Criminal Restraint
1 count of Possession of a Weapon for an Unlawful Purpose related to the sex trafficking of two adult females
It is alleged that Joshua held three adult women captive over a period of time and forced them to engage in various forms of labor, including forced prostitution and domestic servitude, through violence, threats of violence, coercion and the provision of heroin.
One woman managed to escape through a window and alerted authorities to the presence of the other females who were ultimately recovered.
Joshua is lodged in the Atlantic County Justice Facility and the State has moved to detain him and a detention hearing will be held on Wednesday, February 27, 2019.
The State is represented by Chief Assistant Prosecutor Danielle Buckley.
These charges are merely an accusation and not proof of guilt. In all criminal cases, a charged defendant is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.