A former Portsmouth city councilman and local attorney was detained by police while officials searched his home Wednesday morning. Michael Mearan has been rumored to be a key player in a sex trafficking ring in Scioto County, according to an article on the Cincinnati Enquirer website.
Portsmouth Police detectives began investigating Mearan in 2017, concerning the rumors of his alleged involvement. The state Bureau of Criminal Investigation also became involved in March.
Ten different women previously told The Enquirer they had worked as prostitutes for Mearan, with several of the women saying they had traveled to numerous states to have money for sex at the behest of Mearan.
The state’s investigation reflects what was initially outlined in a sealed federal wiretap affidavit issued as part of a separate Drug Enforcement Administration investigation several years ago. That investigation resulted in eight drug convictions, but Mearan was never charged.