The tragic course of one woman's life is traced in this drama from Mexico. Maria Ortiz is a lovely and virtuous 19-year-old schoolteacher who one day falls victim to a brutal rapist. When Maria's mother witnesses the shocking crime, she kills the rapist; rather than allow her mother to go to prison, Maria claims responsibility for the criminal's death. While behind bars, Maria gives birth to a baby boy, and is forced to give her child up for adoption. After serving her sentence, Maria's tainted reputation prevents her from returning to education, so she becomes a prostitute, and her beauty makes her one of the most successful courtesans in Mexico. Having risen to the top of her profession, Maria opens a brothel in Vera Cruz, but despite the attentions of many men, her heart remains untouched as she wonders what became of her son.
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