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Press Release

Illegal Alien Facing Federal Indictment for Sex Trafficking of a Minor and Related Charges

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, District of Maryland

Baltimore, Maryland – A federal grand jury returned an indictment on July 25 2019, charging Feliciano de Jesus Diaz-Martinez, a/k/a Alex, age 41, of Owings Mills, Maryland, for sex trafficking of a child, enticement of a minor to engage in prostitution, sex trafficking by force, fraud and coercion, and distribution of a controlled substance.  Diaz-Martinez is in custody and is scheduled to have an initial appearance in U.S. District Court in Baltimore on July 29, 2019.

The indictment was announced by United States Attorney for the District of Maryland Robert K. Hur; Acting Special Agent in Charge Cardell T. Morant of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations (HSI); Chief Melissa R. Hyatt of the Baltimore County Police Department; and Baltimore County State’s Attorney Scott Shellenberger.

According to the seven-count indictment, beginning no later than 2016 and continuing through May 22, 2019, Diaz-Martinez, a Guatemalan national in the United States illegally, caused more than 25 individuals, including minors, to engage in commercial sex acts for his own financial benefit by means of force, fraud, and coercion.  Diaz-Martinez knew that Victim 1 was 16 years old when he first caused her to engage in commercial sex acts.  Victim 1 continued to work for Diaz-Martinez until she was approximately 18 years old.  The indictment alleges that nearly all of the victims that Diaz-Martinez caused to engage in commercial sex acts suffered from serious substance abuse disorders, including addictions to heroin, crack cocaine, and Xanax.  Diaz-Martinez allegedly took half or all of the money earned by the victims working for him, and sold some of the victims narcotics, often at prices significantly higher than he paid to purchase the drugs.

As alleged in the indictment, Diaz-Martinez maintained a network of friends and associates who paid to engage in commercial sex acts with the victims Diaz-Martinez advertised and made available to them.  Diaz-Martinez sent his customers pictures of the victims available for commercial sex and set the prices that customers would pay to engage in sex acts with the victims he controlled.  Diaz-Martinez allegedly transported, or caused to be transported, victims to his customers’ homes, or to hotel rooms he rented, to engage in commercial sex acts and/or invited customers to engage in commercial sex acts with victims in his apartment and in a storage unit that he rented.

Diaz-Martinez allegedly maintained several different accounts, using alias names, on a social media platform which he used to recruit and communicate with the victims in order to entice them to work for him and engage in commercial sex acts, including many users he had never met.  According to the indictment, Diaz-Martinez sometimes offered the users he communicated with heroin and crack cocaine, referred to as “boy” and “girl,” in exchange for engaging in commercial sex with his customers.  Diaz-Martinez also directed the victims working for him to recruit their friends, many of whom were also addicted to narcotics, to engage in commercial sex for his financial benefit.

According to the indictment, Diaz-Martinez frequently demanded that the victims engage in sex acts with him, free of charge, and retaliated against victims if he was not personally satisfied with the sexual encounter.  The indictment further alleges that Diaz-Martinez retaliated against the victims who violated his rules, failed to earn sufficient money from commercial sex, or otherwise displeased him in a number of ways, including abandoning them at customers’ homes and on roadsides without their belongings or transportation, and withholding drugs from the victims whom he knew to be addicted.

Diaz-Martinez faces a minimum mandatory sentence of 10 years in prison and a maximum of life in prison for sex trafficking of a minor and for enticement of a minor to engage in prostitution; a minimum mandatory sentence of 15 years and up to life in prison for each of four counts of sex trafficking by force, fraud, and coercion, and a maximum of 20 years in prison for distribution of controlled substances.   

An indictment is not a finding of guilt.  An individual charged by indictment is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty at some later criminal proceedings. 

This case was investigated by the Maryland Human Trafficking Task Force, formed in 2007 to discover and rescue victims of human trafficking while identifying and prosecuting offenders.  Members include federal, state and local law enforcement, as well as victim service providers and local community members.  For more information about the Maryland Human Trafficking Task Force, please visit

Report suspected instances of human trafficking to HSI's tip line at 866-DHS-2ICE (1-866-347-2423) or by completing its online tip form.  Both are staffed around the clock by investigators.

United States Attorney Robert K. Hur commended HSI Baltimore, the Baltimore County Police Department and the Baltimore County State’s Attorney’s Office for their work in the investigation.  Mr. Hur thanked Assistant U.S. Attorneys Zachary A. Myers and Mary W. Setzer, who are prosecuting the case.

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Marcia Murphy
(410) 209-4854

Updated July 26, 2019

Human Trafficking