TRENTON, New Jersey — State authorities say a northern New Jersey man accused of running a high-priced prostitution ring has been indicted on numerous counts.
Percival Williams of Edison allegedly used violence and threats to enslave women. Authorities say the 36-year-old Williams often solicited girls in the Cleveland area to work in his New Jersey-based operation.
Williams faces 10 counts in the indictment handed up Tuesday by a state grand jury, including human trafficking, kidnapping and racketeering. He remains jailed on $1 million bail and could get a life term if convicted on all counts.
In connection with the kidnapping charge, prosecutors say Williams abducted a woman from Cleveland. After he couldn't persuade her to move to New York with him, he allegedly laced her drink with a narcotic that caused her to pass out. While she was unconscious, he allegedly drove her to New Jersey against her will, where he attempted to force her to work as a prostitute.
"Williams allegedly forced women into a life where they had to prostitute themselves or be beaten," Acting Attorney General Hoffman said. "Through isolation and fear, he enslaved vulnerable women from as far away as Ohio in his prostitution ring. Victims of human trafficking feel helpless to defend themselves, so we are making it a priority in New Jersey to rescue them and bring traffickers like Williams to justice."
Williams' 24-year-old girlfriend, Chanell "Asha" Vaughn, faces four counts, including racketeering and receiving stolen property. Authorities say Vaughn allegedly supplemented their business by stealing $500,000 worth of uncut diamonds from a client at a New York City hotel. She remains free on $50,000 bail.