News and Press Releases

United States Attorney Jenny A. Durkan
Western District of Washington

Defendant Used Threats and Violence to Keep Young Woman in Prostitution

March 4, 2011

MARLON JOE TRAMBLE, 26, of Seattle, Washington, was sentenced today in U.S. District Court in Seattle to ten years in prison, three years of supervised release for transportation in furtherance of prostitution by coercion and enticement.. TRAMBLE was arrested in November 2009, for enticing a young woman into prostitution, and keeping her working as a prostitute for his benefit using threats and violence. At sentencing U.S. District Judge Ricardo S. Martinez said he was troubled by TRAMBLE preying on young women. “The violence towards young women is not acceptable.... The fact that he believes this is the best way of funding his lifestyle is a real concern,” the Judge said.

According to records filed in the case, TRAMBLE met the victim when she was just 18-years-old, was estranged from her mother, and was living on the streets of Seattle. TRAMBLE forced the victim to give him all the money she earned as a prostitute so that he could use it for his expenses including living in hotels, buying drugs and alcohol, and paying for strippers. TRAMBLE transported the woman across the country to Anaheim, Sacramento, Los Angeles, San Diego, Phoenix, and Las Vegas where she was forced to work as a prostitute and give him her earnings.

TRAMBLE kept the victim under his control with threats and physical and verbal abuse, and isolation. TRAMBLE hid her identification so she could not leave. When she was arrested for prostitution he refused to use her own earnings to bail her out of jail. In October 2009, when the victim was seven months pregnant, TRAMBLE beat and choked her when she refused to walk the streets and look for customers in Los Angeles. TRAMBLE fled when the police were called. Finally, in November 2009, TRAMBLE was arrested after threatening to kill the victim. TRAMBLE had told the victim he would “slit her throat,” for speaking with law enforcement.

Even after his arrest in this case, TRAMBLE was trying to befriend and benefit from another young female. Prosecutors asked that as part of his term of supervised release, TRAMBLE be evaluated for sexual deviancy. Judge Martinez agreed to impose that condition and ordered TRAMBLE to pay $10,000 in restitution to the victim.

“We will continue to work with our law enforcement partners to rescue those kept in the sex trade through force and coercion,” said Steve Dean, Assistant Special Agent in Charge, FBI Seattle.

“This case demonstrates the power of combining the legwork, contacts, and expertise of local law enforcement with federal prosecution,” said King County Sheriff Sue Rahr. “Now, Tramble will get the kind of punishment he deserves.”

The case was investigated by the FBI and the King County Sheriff’s Office. The case was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorneys Catherine Crisham and Ye-Ting Woo, and Special Assistant United States Attorney Sean O’Donnell.


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