Wednesday July 31, 2013

SARATOGA SPRINGS, N.Y. -- Seven people were arrested, five for prostitution, in a weekend raid that was part of a nationwide crackdown on child sex trafficking.

No juveniles were involved among the Spa City arrests, which occurred Sunday, according to Saratoga Springs police. One city woman was among those arrested.

Pamela A. Baumgardner, 45, Marcolena E. Miller, 27, of Loudonville, Virginia L. Quesnel-Gillett, 29, of Troy, Ginger R. Wood, 23, of Albany, and Krista Cherry, 21, of Glens Falls were each charged with misdemeanor prostitution.

Carl S. Young, 35, of Albany was charged with fifth-degree crimial possession of a controlled substance, a felony, and unlawful possession of marijuana. Shannon L. Tracey, 29, of Ballston Spa was charged with petty larceny, a misdemeanor.

The investigation and arress were carried out in conjunction with the FBI’s Albany office and state police.

Authorities rescued 105 children who were forced into prostitution and arrested 150 pimps and others in a three-day law enforcement sweep in 76 American cities, the FBI said Monday. The victims, almost all girls, range in age from 13 to 17.

The largest numbers of children rescued were in San Francisco, Detroit, Milwaukee, Denver and New Orleans. The campaign, known as Operation Cross Country, was conducted under the FBI’s Innocence Lost initiative.

~ The Saratogian