MAYS LANDING -
An Atlantic City man has been charged with human trafficking.
Acting Atlantic County Prosecutor Jim McClain announced Tuesday that 30-year-old Donnie Bethea has been charged with operating a human trafficking ring. Authorities say he lured women into motels in the West Atlantic City section of Egg Harbor Township, and forced the women into prostitution by threatening serious bodily harm or physical restraint. Authorities say Bethea posted advertisements of the women on backpage.com to lure in men.
The Egg Harbor Township Police Department, as well as the FBI's "Innocence Lost" task force conducted the investigation and found Bethea held a total of six women, all in their early 20's, against their will over a five month period. The Innocence Lost task force began investigating Bethea in April, 2013.
Bethea was first arrested on August 28th by Egg Harbor Township Police for holding a 22-year-old woman against her will, forcing her to engage in prostitution. Further investigation led to the discovery of more victims, and six counts of human trafficking charges being brought against Bethea. He is currently being held on $1 million dollars bail.
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