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February 22, 2023Baltimore, MD, United StatesHuman Smuggling/Trafficking, Narcotics

HSI Baltimore investigation lands Maryland man 8-year federal prison sentence for human trafficking, drug charges

BALTIMORE — An investigation conducted by Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) Baltimore resulted in a Maryland man’s 8-year federal prison sentence for human trafficking and drug charges. Adolph Scott, 37, of Baltimore, received the lengthy prison sentence Feb. 15 for transporting an individual to engage in prostitution and for possession with intent to distribute controlled substances.

According to the HSI Baltimore investigation, from early 2020 to Feb. 3, 2021, Scott traveled with his victim and other women from North Carolina to Maryland to have them engage in commercial sex acts. Scott admitted that he coerced, threatened and forced his victim to engage in commercial sex acts for his own benefit.

“The sentencing of Adolph Scott was possible because of the amazing collaborative efforts of HSI Baltimore and our law-enforcement partners,” said Special Agent in Charge James C. Harris of HSI Baltimore. “Mr. Scott is well deserving of this sentence; he not only forced a woman to engage in prostitution for his own personal gain, but he also used her drug addiction against her. HSI Baltimore will continue to exhaust all of our resources to ensure criminals like Mr. Scott are brought to justice.”

As detailed in the investigation, the victim suffered from drug addiction. Scott manipulated her by withholding drugs unless she engaged in commercial sex for his personal benefit.

Scott required the victim to give all commercial sex proceeds to him in exchange for drugs. The investigation further detailed that Scott also supplied drugs to other addicted women who engaged in commercial sex acts. Scott was aware that his victim and the other women were highly dependent on heroin and cocaine. 

According to the HSI investigation, on Feb. 2, 2021, law enforcement officials received a report regarding possible human trafficking at an Elkridge, Maryland, hotel.  As a result of the report, an undercover detective responded to a commercial sex advertisement at the hotel, while other undercover police surveilled the hotel. 

While the undercover agent was solicited for sex by a woman in a hotel room, surveilling officers saw Scott exit the same room and walk through the building. Officers arrested and searched him. The search revealed two cellphones, $428 in cash, and distribution amounts of heroin, cocaine and fentanyl. Scott admitted that he intended to distribute the controlled substances to his victim and the other women.

Investigators obtained a state search warrant to search the contents of Scott’s cellphone. One of the phones was identified as the phone used to communicate with undercover detectives in response to the commercial sex advertisement. Additionally, the phone contained text message conversations regarding drug distribution and commercial sex dates at the motel.

Investigators obtained a federal search warrant to search the contents of Scott’s storage locker in Raleigh, North Carolina. Inside the storage locker, investigators located condoms, lubricant, heroin needles, and clothing and personal items belonging to Scott, his victim and the other women. 

HSI Baltimore conducted this investigation with significant assistance from the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Maryland, the Howard County Police Department and the Baltimore Police Department.

HSI encourages members of the public to report crimes or suspicious activity by calling the HSI tip line at 866-347-2423. The tip line is manned 24 hours a day.

HSI is the principal investigative arm of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), responsible for investigating transnational crime and threats, specifically those criminal organizations that exploit the global infrastructure through which international trade, travel, and finance move. HSI’s workforce of over 10,400 employees consists of more than 6,800 special agents assigned to 225 cities throughout the United States, and 93 overseas locations in 56 countries. HSI’s international presence represents DHS’s largest investigative law enforcement presence abroad and one of the largest international footprints in U.S. law enforcement.