A Chambersburg man has been charged with operating a human trafficking operation across several counties in Pennsylvania. Joseph “Jay” Pulizzi, aged 37, was charged with various offenses, including trafficking of individuals, involuntary servitude, and aggravated assault, among others.
Targeting Vulnerable Women
The Office of Attorney General investigation revealed that Pulizzi targeted vulnerable women and deceived them into his sex work operation, which he controlled with violence and threats. Pulizzi recruited at least seven victims suffering from substance use disorders, homelessness, and other hardships. He promised them significant amounts of money, housing, and security in exchange for unspecified services. Instead, the women were forced to stay in hotel rooms or other temporary lodgings and perform sexual acts, receiving very little of the proceeds.
Using Skip the Games Website
Pulizzi primarily used the website “Skip the Games” to arrange paid sexual encounters with buyers. He used photos of the women without their permission and forced them to meet with the buyers and perform sexual acts in exchange for money. Pulizzi kept the majority of the money, giving the women only a small portion to purchase basic necessities like food and hygiene products.
The Grand Jury heard testimony from the victims who discussed how Pulizzi used violence and threats to trap them, making it very difficult for them to leave. Many felt they had no option but to stay and continue to work for him, and were afraid to ask for help from law enforcement or others.
This case was a joint investigation by the Office of Attorney General, the Pennsylvania State Police, and Homeland Security Investigations (HSI). Senior Deputy Attorney General Heather Castellino is prosecuting the case. All charges are allegations, and the defendant is presumed innocent until proven guilty.
Standing Up for Victims
Attorney General Michelle Henry stated that her office is committed to combating human trafficking and standing up for the victims who feel they have no alternative but to continue to endure a horrific cycle of abuse. Major Serell Ulrich, Director, Bureau of Criminal Investigation of the Pennsylvania State Police, also stated that the police force is committed to thoroughly investigating any type of human trafficking and involuntary servitude of others.
Pulizzi has been arrested and remanded to Dauphin County Prison without bail. The charges, which stem from the 49th Investigating Grand Jury, will be prosecuted by the Pennsylvania Office of Attorney General. This case highlights the importance of efforts to combat human trafficking and the need to provide support for victims of these crimes.