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Makiki man is convicted of trafficking underage girls

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A sex-trafficking case that extended over nine years ended with a guilty verdict Thursday, prompting the Honolulu prosecuting attorney to put out an offer of help to other victims and a warning to potential pimps.

Marquis Green, who was 30 at the time of his crimes and claimed a Makiki address, was found guilty of two counts of sex trafficking, one count of first-degree sexual assault and one count of misdemeanor assault for trafficking a 15-year-old Hawaii girl in Waikiki in 2013, charging $150 per half-hour or $200 per hourlong encounter, according to court documents.

Two other underage girls, a 17-year-old, and a 16-year-old, were part of Green’s crew that he used for sex trafficking.

The 15-year-old posted a message on Facebook in 2013 complaining about needing to make money. The 17-year-old messaged her saying, “Hey, you want money, I could show you how to make money,” court records said.

The 17-year-old told the 15-year-old to wear makeup and something pretty. Green then showed up at an arranged meeting place in a black BMW before dropping off the girls on a well-used street in Waikiki, where the 15-year-old provided sex to a man in a pickup truck for $300, which she gave to Green, the records said.

Green told the 15-year-old she was “part of the family now,” and had the two teens take pictures for the now-defunct Backpages adult companionship website after taking her phone.

Court records stated that in June 2013, the 15-year-old got drunk and fell asleep in Green’s Ala Moana-area apartment and that he raped her.

That same month, when Green caught the 15-year-old hanging out with a male friend, he whipped her legs with a belt before punching her in the face, according to the records.

He was arrested Dec. 18, 2013, at 1450 Young St., two days after the 15-year-old identified him to Honolulu police. Green was indicted that Dec. 24 and has been in jail ever since as the case underwent numerous stops and starts.

According to court documents, Green was accused of knowingly advancing or profiting from the prostitution of a teenage girl, who was younger than 16, from May 24 to June 15, 2013. He was also accused of sexually assaulting the teen by forcing her to have sexual intercourse with him during the same period and causing her bodily harm on or about June 15.

Green faces up to 20 years in prison on each count of sex trafficking and first-degree sexual assault, and up to one year for the assault conviction. He is scheduled to be sentenced July 20.

Honolulu Prosecuting Attorney Steve Alm, speaking Monday during a news conference, believes the sentences for each crime should run consecutively to help give sex-trafficking victims the confidence to come forward and deter potential traffickers from preying on Hawaii’s youth.

Green’s conviction is the first successful prosecution of a sex-trafficking case in Hawaii in several years, Alm said, and came just before the start of National Crime Victims’ Rights Week.

“Mr. Green is a cowardly, vicious pimp,” said Alm. “His actions were despicable. He used alcohol, he used violence and other means to control their behavior. … He’s going from jail to prison, hopefully for a very long time.”

Prosecutors’ first attempt to try Green ended when they asked that the charges against him be dismissed March 1, 2021, without prejudice due to “defective charges,” according to state court documents.

Prosecutors immediately refiled the charges, and Alm lauded the female victims, who waited nine years, through multiple motions to continue to case and six attorney swaps by Green, to testify in court against him.

“I honestly think he was hoping the victims would just give up,” said Alm.

He said their “fortitude and patience” ensured Green’s conviction. Alm urged local families and current sex-trafficking victims to reach out for help by contacting the state’s Child Welfare Services, the Susannah Wesley Community Center hotline, the Ho‘ola na Pua hotline or Honolulu police.

“You can get out of this and get your life back,” said Alm. “We will help you. We will prosecute the cases.”

Honolulu Police Department acting Chief Ryan Nishibun told the Honolulu Star-Advertiser that investigators from HPD’s Narcotics/Vice Division’s Sex Trafficking Unit are certified in investigation of internet crimes against children and are part of a state task force that focuses on internet predators who target minors.

The officers also conduct separate HPD operations to locate juveniles who are believed to be sexually exploited, sex-trafficked or at high risk of being sex- trafficked, Nishibun said. In the past two years, 30 such juveniles have been recovered by HPD.

Police officers also are assigned to the federal Department of Homeland Security’s task force and are trained and certified to work on federal cases involving sex trafficking, sexual exploitation of minors and child pornography.

Officers ensure that addressing the trauma and respecting the rights of victims are prioritized during any investigation.

“Our officers work closely with victim advocates. When a victim is identified, an advocate is immediately requested to provide emotional support, counseling and assistance with food, housing and other necessities,” said Nishibun. “Building trust between the victim, advocate and investigator is key in apprehending and convicting perpetrators. It’s common for the initial stage of the investigation to be slowed so that the victim can receive treatment and support to prevent further trauma.”


>> Child Welfare Services hotline: Oahu, 808-832-1999; toll-free from neighbor islands, 888-398-1188

>> Susannah Wesley Community Center, 808-721-9614

>> Sex Abuse Treatment Center, 808-524-7273

>> Ho’ola na Pua, 808-222-1872

>> Honolulu Police Department: Call 911 or talk to a police officer.

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