Sterling Heights man charged with sex trafficking of teenage girl in Southfield

Andrew Golden charged with human trafficking of 17-year-old girl

SOUTHFIELD, Mich. – A Sterling Heights man was charged Friday with sex trafficking a 17-year-old girl in Southfield.

Andrew Golden is charged with one count of human trafficking -- recruiting a minor for commercial sexual activity -- after officials said he advertised the girl online for "adult entertainment: escorts."

Officials said they received the tip about the alleged sex trafficking Tuesday from a 15-year-old girl who was found in Pennsylvania earlier in the week. The 15-year-old said she had been picked up in New Jersey by Golden and the 17-year-old victim.

Golden allegedly told the 15-year-old that he would be taking the two girls to Michigan to be posted online for commercial sex.

Agents found a posting Wednesday on the website Backpage advertising a girl that allegedly matched the description of the 17-year-old. They conducted an undercover investigation and rescued the girl that day.

Golden was arrested at a hotel in Southfield.

"This case continues to highlight the sickening reality that human trafficking is happening right here in Michigan, every day," said Michigan Attorney General Bill Schuette. "I want to applaud the quick work of all the law enforcement and investigative teams in acting on this tip and rescuing a young woman from this horrible situation."

Golden was arraigned Friday in the 46th District Court in Southfield. He was given $200,000 bail and is scheduled to return to court Dec. 29 for a pre-exam conference.

The human-trafficking charge carries a maximum penalty of 20 years in prison.

"Human Trafficking is very real and it happens closer to home than many realize," said Southfield Police Chief Eric Hawkins. "I was glad to see a dangerous individual taken off the street. Our department will continue to work with all levels of law enforcement to eradicate human trafficking in our community."

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Derick is the Lead Digital Editor for ClickOnDetroit and has been with Local 4 News since April 2013. Derick specializes in breaking news, crime and local sports.