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News Release

Wednesday, March 9, 2016

Media Relations

Human Trafficking Suspects Convicted NR16091dm

Los Angeles: Task force completes lengthy investigation resulting in felony convictions.

On March 7, 2016, the Los Angeles Police Department's Operations-South Bureau Human Trafficking Task Force and 77th Division's Vice Unit, in partnership with the Los Angeles County District Attorney's Office, completed a 15 month investigation into the human trafficking of two victims. One of the victims was a juvenile.

The investigation revealed that from August 2014 to September 2015, Maurice English, a documented gang member, forced the two victims to work for him as prostitutes along the Figueroa Street and Western Avenue corridors in South Los Angeles. English demanded that each victim earn $1,000.00 per day for him. During one incident, English prevented the juvenile victim from exiting his vehicle by physically assaulted her. She reported the incident to her grandmother and the Los Angeles Police Department. The second victim came forward and described the abuse she suffered as well.

Maurice English, a 27-year-old resident of Los Angeles, pled guilty to Human Trafficking and Assault with a Deadly Weapon. He was sentenced to 15 years in prison for his crimes.

Shelia Smith, an associate of English and a 25-year-old resident of Los Angeles, pled guilty to Witness Intimidation. She was sentenced to 4 years Formal Probation.

Anyone with additional information is asked to call Operations South Bureau Human Trafficking Task Force at (213) 926-3963. During non-business hours or on weekends, calls should be directed to 1-877-LAPD-24-7 (1-877-527-3247). Anyone wishing to remain anonymous should call Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-TIPS (800-222-8477). Tipsters may also contact Crime Stoppers by texting to phone number 274637 (C-R-I-M-E-S on most keypads) with a cell phone. All text messages should begin with the letters "LAPD." Tipsters may also go to, and click on "Anonymous Web Tips."