UPDATE (3:16 p.m.)—A Parkville couple accused of treating a 15-year-old North Carolina girl as a sex slave faces more than a dozen state and federal charges, authorities said.
A federal indictment, handed down May 9, charges John Andrew Blaes, 48, and Margaret Ellen Jones, 36, with transporting a minor across state lines for sexual purposes, as well as producing and distributing child pornography.
Blaes and Jones, who lived together at Blaes' home in the 8600 block of Wendell Ave., at the time of the alleged crimes, met online in 2010 and became involved in a sexual relationship involving "bondage, discipline, sadism and masochism," according to the indictment.
You can read the federal indictment in PDF format attached to this article.
In July 2011, the indictment states, the pair sent nude photographs to the North Carolina girl before driving to the state, where they picked her up and allegedly abused her in the car.
Between July and November 2011, the girl moved into the couple's home, where they allegedly had sex with her multiple times per week, recorded themselves and distributed the video online, according to the indictment.
It is unclear whether the recent federal indictment will affect the state case. Blaes and Jones are scheduled to stand trial in Baltimore County on June 20, according to electronic court records.
In Baltimore County, each defendant was charged with two counts of sexual abuse of a minor, three counts of both third- and fourth-degree sexual offense, one count each of sexual solicitation of a minor, two separate types of child pornography charges, possessing child pornography and prostitution of a person under 16.
In addition, Blaes faces an additional two counts of possession of child pornography with the intent to promote or distribute.
Scott Shellenberger, the state's attorney for Baltimore County, told Patch that prosecutors had not decided where to pursue the case.
"All I can tell you at this point is that both jurisdictions have charges and we are working together to decide which jurisdiction is best to proceed in," Shellenberger said. "We expect that we'll have a decision before the [Baltimore County] trial date."
Vickie Le Duc, a spokeswoman for the United State's Attorney's office, confirmed Shellenberger's statement, but did not provide any further information.
"We work together to decide how best to prosecute the case," Le Duc said.
Stay with Patch for updates.
Editor's Note (12:30 p.m.)—A previous version of this article misidentified suspect Margaret Ellen Jones as Mary Ellen Jones. Patch regrets the error.
Editor's Note (3:17 p.m.)—A photo, released by Baltimore County and originally attached to this article, contained an inaccurate image of Margaret Ellen Jones. Police confirmed a Patch reader's comment pointing out the inaccurate photo. Police have since released the correct photograph, which is now attached to this article. A spokeswoman for the police department apologized and said they regret the error.