Five people arrested after woman trafficked in sex trade for months across GTA
Five people facing charges in a human trafficking investigation are shown in these handout images. (Toronto Police Service)
Katherine DeClerq, CTV News Toronto
Published Wednesday, July 10, 2019 3:16PM EDT
Five people, including the mother of one of the accused, have been charged in connection with a human trafficking investigation.
Toronto police said that a woman was sexually assaulted by two men at a party, which she had been invited to by a man she met on an online dating site.
The victim was then trafficked into the sex trade, police said. Over the next few months, the woman was transported to hotels across the Greater Toronto Area and throughout Ontario and forced to turn over her earnings to one of the men that assaulted her.
Police said that the victim was fearful for her life and allege that the man threatened to kill her and showed her firearms “as an element of control and intimidation.”
Investigators said the woman was turned over to the second man who allegedly assaulted her at the party. That man continued to traffic the victim in the sex trade, police said.
Police said the first man directed the victim to turn her earnings over to his mother, who investigators say accepted the money “with full knowledge that all the money received was the result of the victim working for her son in the sex trade.”
Police said that a third man procured the victim to work for him, but when his attempts were unsuccessful, he sexually assaulted her on two occasions.
Another woman assisted in the transportation of the victim and the disposing of the firearms, police said.
Members of the Toronto Police Sex Crimes Human Trafficking Enforcement Team executed two search warrants in Barrie on May 17 and took three people into custody.
Barrie residents Tapiwa Musara, 27, Jacqueline Myers-Ellis, 54, and Anya Browne, 38, have each been charged with numerous offences in connection with the investigation.
Two more suspects identified by police as 30-year-old Toronto resident Devone Nolan and 28-year-old Barrie resident Stephan Myers were arrested and charged in June.
Police said they are concerned there may be more victims and are urging anyone with information to contact police or reach out to Crime Stoppers anonymously.