Inside a handsome brick building on a tree-lined street near Brooklyn’s Prospect Park lay one of the city’s dirtiest secrets.
As people strolled past the Prospect Heights home on their way to the park, the Brooklyn Museum or a bar where celebrated authors give readings for The New Yorker crowd, two 16-year-old girls were allegedly being kept inside as sex slaves.
For one harrowing month last year, the teens’ captors forced them to strip to their underwear, pose for Backpage.com ads and have sex with up to 10 johns a day, prosecutors charge.
The girls were saved when one of them escaped in July and ran to police. But they are just two of the thousands of sex slaves being trafficked under the noses of New York City residents every day, part of a silent epidemic that law enforcement is struggling to contain.