Boston: 5 arrested in US sting at Marriott

Officials say operation targets child prostitution
By Shelley Murphy, Globe Staff | February 21, 2009

A guest at the Boston Marriott Long Wharf said she and her mother were on their way to their room after checking in shortly after midnight yesterday when they encountered a raucous scene in a sixth-floor hallway as some 17 FBI agents and plainclothes officers were struggling to arrest two kicking and screaming young women.

“It was a huge scene,” said the guest, who asked not to be identified, adding that it was frightening to have to walk by a gauntlet of investigators to get to their room as one of the women screamed at the top of her lungs, then rolled around on the floor hyperventilating.

“We kept asking, ‘What’s going on?’ ” said the guest, adding that officers told her to “keep moving” and, “It’s none of your business.”

Yesterday, the FBI, Boston police, and State Police said they were at the hotel conducting an undercover investigation as part of “Operation Cross Country,” a nationwide initiative of the US Justice Department aimed at cracking down on child prostitution. Continue reading