Tart Found Guilty in Prostitution Scheme

Tart Found Guilty in Prostitution Scheme

In July, a Chantilly man's partner in crime was sentenced to jail for his role in a teen-age prostitution scheme. Now he, too, has been found guilty and is slated for sentencing in October.

The two are Joshua Brandon Tart of 13110 Point Pleasant Drive in Chantilly and Miguel Angelo Castro of 8501 Allentown Road, Fort Washington, Md.

THE CRIME occurred between March 11 and April 1, and it was on the latter date that it came to light. That's when, around 3 a.m., a City of Fairfax detective found out that a runaway was staying at the Fairfield Inn on Corsair Court in Chantilly.

Since the hotel was in their jurisdiction, Fairfax County officers were notified and responded to the scene. There, they discovered a 16-year-old-girl with Tart and Castro — both 26 years old.

According to police, "Investigation revealed that the men and girl were using the Internet to facilitate a prostitution business. Illegal narcotics were also discovered inside the hotel room."

Police arrested Castro and Tart and charged both of them with pandering and contributing to the delinquency of a minor. The latter charge was dropped in May; but on June 19, the grand jury indicted both men on the pandering offense.

On June 27 in Circuit Court, Castro entered an Alford plea of guilt. By doing so, he acknowledged the existence of enough evidence to convict him of the crime of which he was accused.

At that time, Assistant Commonwealth's Attorney Camille Turner told the court that further investigation revealed that the teen-ager and the two men had met in March when she ran away from home. Turner said Castro and Tart then "began posting ads on the Internet advertising sex [from the girl] on craigslist.org."

Once prospective customers responded, she said, "Arrangements [for sex] were made by phone, and the girl would provide oral sex or sexual intercourse for a previously arranged fee. The proceeds were used to purchase food, hotel rooms, drugs and alcohol."

On July 28, Circuit Court Judge Gaylord Finch sentenced Castro to three years in prison, suspending all but three months. He also placed Castro on three years active probation.

Tart had a two-day jury trial that began Aug. 21 and, when all was said and done, he was found guilty of receiving money from the earnings of a prostitute. His case was also heard before Judge Finch and, following preparation of his pre-sentencing report, Tart is scheduled to return to Circuit Court on Oct. 27 for sentencing.