MIDDLESEX COUNTY, NJ - A man from Highland Park has been arrested and charged with the kidnapping and sexual assault of a 16-year old teenager from Pennsylvania that he met on social media. He is also charged with first-degree human trafficking.  First Degree Kidnapping is punishable by imprisonment of 15 to 30 years. If the victim is less than 16 years old or where there are aggravating factors (such as sexual assault or selling or delivering the victim for financial gain), the penalty is a prison term of 25 years to life, with or without the possibility of parole after 25 years.

According to New Jersey 211, human trafficking is a form of modern-day slavery involving the use of force, fraud, or coercion to control victims for the purpose of engaging in commercial sex acts or labor services against the worker’s will. It is taking place throughout the world, oftentimes in plain sight.Evidence of sex trafficking ican be found in residential brothels, escort services, fake massage businesses, strip clubs, and street prostitution.Labor trafficking may be found in settings involving domestic work, small businesses, large farms, and factories.

Vulnerable populations associated with human trafficking are runaway and homeless youth, foreign nationals, and individuals who have experienced violence and trauma in the past

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According to a report issued by the Middlesex County Prosecutor's office, Andrew X. Carnegie-Blackman, 23, of Highland Park was arrested and charged yesterday with first-degree kidnapping, first-degree human trafficking, two counts of sexual assault in the second degree, criminal sexual contact in the fourth degree, two counts of endangering the welfare of a child in the second degree, and tampering with physical evidence in the fourth degree.  He is a former student at Highland Park High School and Middlesex County College.

On June 26, 2019, Highland Park Police were notified by the West Newton Pennsylvania Police of a runaway and were asked to check a Highland Park residence for a missing 16-year old. Police responded to the residence and located the minor. Carnegie-Blackman was subsequently taken into custody on June 27, 2019. 

A preliminary investigation determined that Carnegie-Blackman drove to Pennsylvania to pick up the 16-year old after they met on social media and brought the minor back to his New Jersey residence.

The investigation is active and continuing. Anyone with information is asked to call Sergeant Jason Culver or Detective Sean McGraw of the Highland Park Police Department at (732) 572-3800.

Carnegie-Blackman is scheduled for an initial court appearance this afternoon in New Brunswick Superior Court.

As is the case with all criminal defendants, the charges against Carnegie-Blackman are merely accusations and he is presumed innocent until proven guilty.