Ten spas have been closed, and several people have been taken into custody on sex trafficking charges. The owner of Orchids of Asia Day Spa, 58-year-old Hua Zhang, was arrested Tuesday on 29 prostitution and related charges. Police in her arrest report said they watched video of her employees performing various sex acts with two dozen customers.
South Carolina law requires posting of human trafficking awareness posters in hotels, bars and airports.Now, posters with the human trafficking hotline and other awareness information are in stalls in the men’s and women’s restrooms of Colonial Life Arena for college basketball’s biggest annual event.
Roger DeHart walked from the Broward courthouse to the front steps of the U.S. Capitol building in Washington, D.C., DeHart, 48, logged 1,065 miles on foot during his “No More Miles” walk. First S.T.O.P, which stands for “Saving Teens and Others from Predators.” And now DeHart is ready to put on his walking shoes again.
Almost 25 million victims worldwide. A $150 billion industry. Today’s second-fastest-growing crime, behind drug trafficking. These figures from the World International Labor Organization describe the silent, troubling industry of human trafficking.
She recalled a brief encounter with a man in a van when she was a teen; some time after that, he abducted a nine-year-old girl, who was never seen again. Reflecting on the lecture and on her childhood memory, she realized that human trafficking was as much a local problem as a global one and was much more widespread than she had imagined.
U.S. Army veteran plans to walk to Springfield next week to raise awareness and funds to help children and young adults affected by human trafficking. Jordan Mitchell, 28, of New Lenox, said he plans to make the 189-mile march with a ruck sack weighing up to 100 pounds.
“Sexual exploitation in all of its forms is reprehensible,” Markey told the Globe’s Bob Hohler. “These allegations are very alarming, and I have confidence that the authorities will be investigating this matter fully to get to the truth.”
It truly took a community effort to build this community of tiny houses. More than 40 businesses donated materials and labor. Every Saturday 50 to 100 volunteers, many from local churches, would show up to help.
When Tampa Bay Tech’s government class came up with a mock bill to pass among peers, Anjali Sanichara took it as a challenge. Sanichara chose to draft a bill which would provide amnesty to human trafficking victims.
Victims are often forced to commit crimes, Sanichara explained, crimes they would otherwise not commit and should not be prosecuted for.
An Austin-based nonprofit Allies Against Slavery has developed new technology to help social service agencies identify victims of human trafficking. The screening tool, called Lighthouse, makes it possible for organizations to quickly and effectively identify whether their clients are being exploited.
When state Rep. Vincent Pedone, D-Worcester, stepped up to Statehouse podium in 2006 to call for the regulation of massage therapy, he was quickly met by laughter and catcalls that filled the chamber and cut him short. The bill that passed that day — despite lawmakers’ laughter, but policymakers and society still don’t take massage, and the human traffickers who increasingly hide behind it, seriously.
Most have a history of childhood trauma to include physical, emotional or sexual abuse and are lured by traffickers with false promises of a better life to include employment and financial success.
These victims are manipulated and often don’t realize they’re being trafficked for sex or labor or both.
Joseph Moore of Salt Lake City, UT. was sentenced to two terms of five years up to life in prison for sex trafficking Bailey Orr, who was 16 years old at the time and exploiting his own adult daughter for prostitution.
Orr is now 18 and agreed to share her story in hopes of helping other potential victims.
Sex trafficking, as the federal government defines it, is “the recruitment, harboring, transportation, provision or obtaining of a person for the purpose of a commercial sex act” by means of “force, fraud, or coercion.” This is a form of modern-day slavery.
While most girls planned their Sweet 16 birthday parties, Connie became a victim of sex trafficking by a serial sex offender father who was also her pimp. She was that girl next door. No one ever suspected she was being sold for sex
The victims range in age from 12 to 66 years old, according to a news release from the Cuyahoga County, OH. Additionally, 227 individuals have been interviewed and given a referral for recovery services.
I never, ever, would have thought that this topic would need to be breached here in Tillamook County. I am concerned about the reaction of Tillamook County residents to this discussion, but I am determined to be a part of the solution…and I hope you will all do the same.
Nevada lawmakers are considering a bill that takes the first step toward treating survivors of child sex exploitation as victims, not criminals. Assembly Bill 151 ensures Nevada’s compliance with federal law requiring states to tweak their child abuse and neglect statutes to include sex trafficking.
Officials from more than 10 U.S. cities convened Tuesday in Houston to learn about its successes combatting human trafficking, a broad approach in which the city’s health department, restaurant inspectors and cab companies all help identify potential victims.
In February, Kansas Judge Michael Gibbens came under fire in national news for claiming that two girls, ages 13 and 14, acted as “aggressors” in a situation of exploitation in which a 67-year-old male, Eugene Soden, paid them to have sex.
Texting, online ads and social media have created a new market for sex traffickers, but now same technologies can be tools to fight back.
Geoff Rogers- CEO at the U.S. Institute Against Human Trafficking
In Norwell, MA. the Platinum Body Works Spa was housed in a nondescript blue Cape along a commercial stretch of Route 53. But workers at the neighboring business knew it was no ordinary massage parlor.
After a Scottsbluff, NE. Police officer stopped a driver on May 1, 2018, for a traffic violation, he experienced an unexpected situation: a woman in the car told the officer she was being held against her will.
“This study shows we can do a better job identifying trafficked youth, who typically find it difficult to open up to healthcare providers,” said Dr. Claire Bocchini, a Baylor College of Medicine professor of pediatrics and the paper’s senior author.
Sula Skiles is an advocate for sex trafficking survivors. She serves on the board of the The Trinidi Initiative, an extension of Lavished Ministries. As a survivor herself, she is using her story as a platform to help others.
“When I was 20, this was 15 years ago, I was a young, naive model in Los Angeles, went to just an event for the modeling industry,” Skiles said. One Skiles was overseas, she said what once was a dream come try turned out to be a nightmare. “Once I got there, I was forced to sleep with this monster along with other girls. They would come and go. Every night, there were new girls showing up,” she said.
When Martin County Sheriff William Snyder laid out details last month of a sex trafficking ring his officers helped shut down in central Florida, he made an important distinction to a reporter who referred to the women providing services at the day spas as prostitutes. It’s not a label he was willing to use, he said.
Robert Kraft is accused of soliciting prostitution more than 1,400 miles away in Jupiter, Florida. But in reality, sexual acts for money – similar to what Kraft has pleaded not guilty – happen frequently across Massachusetts, fueled by widespread human trafficking. “This is an activity that exists in Florida, it exists in Massachusetts, it exists all over the country,” said Attorney General Maura Healey during her semi-regular “Ask the AG” show on WGBH radio in February.
In recent years, law-enforcement agencies have focused on arresting and prosecuting human traffickers who profit from exploiting others. But a months long investigation in Martin and Palm Beach counties,was one of the largest in recent memory that targeted the buyers whose dollars allow trafficking organizations to thrive.
The “zombie-like” victims in the South Florida spa sex case in which Patriots owner Robert Kraft is entangled could be part of a $20 million human trafficking ring with ties to China where “the men are the monsters,” a local sheriff says.
Investigators said they believe the women who work at the massage parlors were from China, and that they thought they would be working in legitimate spas for the chance at a better life. A health inspector found them to be enslaved and living a nightmare.
Kraft’s legal woes may be a boon to the world of late-night comedy and talk radio, but to those touched by the moral rot of human trafficking, there’s nothing amusing about this. Orchids of Asia Day Spa in Jupiter, FL. is the definition of seedy: a strip-mall storefront where immigrant women were essentially held in captivity, forced to sleep on massage tables and prepare food in a back alley.
“Sex trafficking is rampant in our city, and eradicating it should be a top priority when the new mayor of Tampa, FL. enters office,” says Geoff Rogers, C.E.O. and Co-founder at The U.S. Institute Against Human Trafficking.
Kevin Malone, President and Co-founder of the U.S. Institute Against Human Trafficking said. “We believe there are 100,000 American boys and girls being sold for sex daily all across our country,” adding that “no one thinks it’s happening but it’s happening in our own backyard.”
In an interview with CBSN on Tuesday, Kevin Malone, president and co-founder of the U.S. Institute Against Human Trafficking, said that “the crime of human sex trafficking is more widespread than many Americans could imagine.”
The Worcester woman is a survivor of sex trafficking. She said that although the Florida investigation involved Asian immigrant women being virtually imprisoned in sexual servitude at spas, the underlying issue is no different from prostitution on the streets of the city.
Volunteer Morrisa Hatten, left, and program chair Staci Aldredge show some of the bras collected by Zonta Club for Free the Girls, a program providing opportunity for sex trafficking survivors to build their own business selling second-hand clothing while going to school, establishing a home and caring for their families.
Governor Brian Kemp and the first lady have announced a plan to combat human trafficking in Georgia. A new bill introduced to the Georgia Legislature on Friday aims to fight the growing threat of modern day slavery in Georgia. Kemp says the Anti-Human Trafficking Protective Response Act or Senate Bill 158 will equip law enforcement with the tools they need to keep Georgia families safe.
Nevada state law currently allows legal brothels in rural counties with fewer than 700,000 residents. Steve Sisolak (D) seeks to ban Nevada from allowing legal prostitution and create a $2 million fund to help women leave the sex trade, The Las Vegas Review-Journal reported. “We’ve got increased public awareness leading to community action,” he said.
“How long have they been trying to tell someone through their eyes or gestures, ‘there is something going on behind those closed doors,'” Rose said. He said first-time offenders are unlikely to get jail time, but depending on where they live, will have to respond to the charges either in person or by mail.
New England Patriots owner Robert Kraft is expected to be charged with solicitation of a sex act at a Florida massage parlor, and the story highlights once again the scourge of sex trafficking in the United States.
Former Los Angeles Dodgers General Manager Kevin Malone, Co-Founder and President of the U.S. Institute Against Human Trafficking, shared his response to a major law enforcement operation in South Florida involving human trafficking and prostitution. Learn more about his organization at www.usiaht.org.
Pujols and his wife Deidre launched a campaign three years ago against human trafficking, Strike Out Slavery, with the Major League Baseball Players Association and Major League Baseball committing $500,000 this month for the cause.
While in production of “Blind Eyes Opened,” a documentary about the truth of sex trafficking in America through the mouths of survivors. Geoff Rogers met Kevin Malone, former general manager of the Dodgers. The two of them began asking why, with thousands of nonprofits in the fight against trafficking in the U.S., were we losing the battle.
“Unfortunately, it takes something like a Robert Kraft or someone of celebrity status to get the attention on human trafficking that it deserves, said Keven Malone President and Co-founder of the U.S. Institute Again Human Trafficking. Malone also said,“In a lot of these so-called massage parlors that a lot of the women are not there by choice. They are being forced and coerced — especially in this situation, those women were enslaved. This is human trafficking.”
Kevin Malone, president and co-founder of the U.S. Institute Against Human Trafficking told Fox News, “Florida’s trafficking bust in massage parlors is just the tip of the iceberg. This is happening all across the country.” Noting that many of the IMBs are managed by Chinese organized crime syndicates, Malone said the women involved “are taken usually to New York, where they are trained what to do.
Members of the public have more power than they realize to help spot and stop sex trafficking. Contrary to popular belief, the majority of trafficking victims are not kept in locked rooms or held without access to the outside world. Here are some things to look out for:
“The rest of the country needs to pay attention of the fact that people are out there buying sex from trafficked victims every single day” says Stephanie Costolo Florida Regional Manager of the Trafficking Free Zone with the U.S. Institute Against Human Trafficking.
With Super Bowl in Miami, FL. for 2020, “A lot of these major sporting events attract thousands of men to a city where they primarily will drink and party and oftentimes purchase sex,” said Kevin Malone, co-founder and president of the U.S. Institute Against Human Trafficking.
Hillsborough County leaders are looking at ways to fight back against human trafficking. At Wednesday’s Board of County Commissioner meeting, Commissioner Kimberly Overman proposed forming a task force to combat the crime, saying she wants to send a clear message. Tampa Bay has zero-tolerance toward human trafficking in general, whether it be for sex trafficking or labor traffic,” Overman said. “Hillsborough County is not ground zero, but close, to some serious problems that are causing a great deal of pain in our community.”
The NoVo Foundation today announced The Life Story Grants, a $10 million, 3-year commitment for programs in the U.S that open exit ramps and close on-ramps to commercial sexual exploitation. NoVo is now inviting Letters of Inquiry for grants across six system-focused “moments”: Housing, Medical Needs, Law Enforcement, Trauma and Mental Health, Immigration, and Systems Impacting Youth.
A California-based software company aiming to use technology to end modern slavery is going to the source for expertise – survivors of human trafficking. Nonprofit AnnieCannons trains survivors in every aspect of software engineering, believing that they have a special insight into the needs of trafficking victims.
In 2014, the Topeka Rescue Mission was referred to assist a total of four victims of human trafficking, says its executive director, Barry Feaker. But that total has since risen steadily to the point where the mission last year received 200 such referrals, he said Wednesday.
There are at least 3,000 trafficking victims each year in San Diego County, and the actual numbers may be much higher. Victims, with an average entry age of 16, are frequently trafficked for three years before being discovered.
A former sex slave is “one million percent” sure human trafficking will occur during the NBA All-Star Weekend in Charlotte, NC. Police acknowledge forced prostitution is “going to be an issue” with the influx of people coming to the Queen City. Joy Anderson, 32, knows firsthand the horrors of sex trafficking.
Another issue for high school students that has become more relevant in recent years relates to human trafficking. In the past 12 months, 7 percent of those surveyed said they had been physically hurt by someone they were dating, while 9 percent said that they were forced to perform sexual acts they weren’t comfortable doing
A major sign of sexual abuse is a change in behavior, said Jean. Children may no longer want to participate in physical education out of the fear of getting undressed in front of others. They may also start to exhibit low self-esteem, poor peer relationships or eating habits. Some victims tend to wear extra layers of clothes regardless of the weather. They may also revert to infantile behavior such as bed wetting, thumb sucking and excessive crying.
In the article entitled “Is the Super Bowl Really the U.S.’s biggest sex trafficking magnet?”,journalist Sebastien Malo interviews Bradley Myles, the chief executive of the Polaris Project, a nonprofit working to combat and prevent modern-day slavery. “All this is, is a one-day snapshot into what otherwise is a 365-day problem,” he told the Thomson Reuters Foundation. “The same traffickers that are committing trafficking . . . during the Super Bowl, they’re going to wake up in the morning on Monday and do the same thing.”
Anthony J. McCaffrey, 59, was sentenced Monday to five years in state prison following a day-long bench trial in Plymouth Superior Court before Judge Cornelius Moriarty. “Human trafficking, especially involving our children, is not just a problem abroad, it is a problem here,” Cruz said in a statement.
A woman who says she was sold for sex as a teenager is suing an Albuquerque motel and the now-closed Backpage website, alleging both businesses had a hand in allowing her to be trafficked. “The evidence is pretty strong (for) that hotel knowing what was going on due to the frequency of the visitors to the room,” McAdams said
“Amazon, the world’s largest online retailer” is “promoting material that sexualizes children and normalizes the dehumanization and sexual commodification of women,” the group said. “Items for sale on Amazon include child-like sex dolls, photography books with eroticized child nudity, pornographic magazines, and clothing items, and more.”
In 2017, North Carolina had 221 reported cases of trafficking, while South Carolina saw 118 reported cases. Officials say both the NBA All-Star Game and CIAA basketball tournaments are large-scale sporting events that could be magnets for human traffickers, with police out in full force and on high alert. “Anybody can be a human trafficker, anybody can be a victim,” said one Charlotte official.
Nevada’s rural counties has turned the state into a magnet for sex traffickers. Las Vegas, NV. resident Kevin Malone, the former general manager of the Los Angeles Dodgers and the president and co-founder of the non-profit U.S. Institute Against Human Trafficking, applauded Nevada’s inclusion on the center’s list.
Her new “boyfriend” sold her for $250 to a pimp who took photos of her, advertised her on Backpage.com. Desiree first, she met a man in his early 20s on Facebook. He “groomed” her, a technique used by exploiters to earn trust to manipulate or control a potential victim of sex abuse.
The job of identifying victims often falls on hospital workers and police officers. All patrol officers in the Birmingham, Alabama Police Department underwent training in January to learn how to recognize victims who often are taught to avoid being noticed.
In Atlanta, GA. more than 25 local, state and federal law enforcement agencies, as well as seven non-government organizations cooperated together to apprehend traffickers, according to an FBI announcement Tuesday. Law enforcement made 169 arrests between Jan. 23 and Feb. 2, according to the FBI.
Eighty percent of these Human Trafficking victims are sexually exploited – in hotel rooms, private homes, on the internet, at spas and nail salons, clubs, truck stops, etc. Some are even forced into pornography. They are men, women, adults, kids, foreigners, and U.S. residents. There is no bias.
The hotel brand said it is “committed to raising awareness” among hotel staff of the indicators for forced commercial sexual exploitation and forced labour, and is “proud to join forces” with human rights partners to support the ‘End It Movement’ to combat human trafficking globally.
Among those arrested in Atlanta, GA. before the Super Bowl were 26 suspects alleged to be sex traffickers and 34 suspects who allegedly attempted to engage in sex acts with minors, according to the FBI. Nine juvenile victims of sex trafficking were rescued, including a 14-year-old.
The Not4$ale Human Trafficking Awareness Initiative, Community Involvement and Service-Learning Alliance, Phi Theta Kappa International Honors Society, and the Honors Program at CFCC presented the event for high school and college students, parents, faculty, and staff.
Sex trafficking survivors and advocates are working across Wisconsin to help communities recognize signs of exploitation, such as tattoos used to brand victims. Nancy Yarbrough is a survivor who started Milwaukee nonprofit Fresh Start Learning, Inc. to provide resources to women and children who are victims of sex trafficking. Yarbrough told Wisconsin Public Radio that tattoos are commonly used in the sex trade to show that a person belongs to a specific trafficker.
Mary Ballinger is one of 250 volunteers taking part in the three-day effort. It’s where people canvass the streets, handing out flyers and gathering tips, that’ll potentially lead them to males and females listed as missing by the state of Nevada. Those missing have been identified by law enforcement as vulnerable, with a great chance of being exploited or sexually trafficked.
It’s been nearly three years since the legislature created a program called Texas Businesses Against Trafficking. The idea is to encourage businesses to adopt anti-trafficking policies and train their workers to spot victims. But right now, there are only six companies taking part across the state, including one in San Antonio. To get more companies on board, the state is now tweaking its rules for membership.
At the moment, Michigan might be best known for the extreme cold temperatures, snow, and ice it is facing, but to Danielle Jordan Bastein, an ER nurse at Henry Ford Hospital in Detroit, Michigan is also known for something far more dangerous: Human trafficking! Thanks to a new screening protocol that she implemented, Bastein is fighting back!
Washington state is an opportune location to be a human trafficker, said Kris Camenzind, executive director of The Human Response Network, and despite its certain presence in Lewis County, it remains an under-reported crime, she added.
Three days before Super Bowl LIII, 33 people were arrested for sex trafficking in the Atlanta area. The city hosts Super Bowl LIII on Sunday. Atlanta, GA. is also considered one of the biggest hubs of sex trafficking nationwide.
The City of Brentwood, CA. and a local coalition plan to highlight human-trafficking prevention through a free interactive and informational event. Brentwood Police Chief Tom Hansen said no community is exempt from the possibility of such crimes.
“It’s not necessarily about football or the NFL,” says Courtney Dow, an outreach coordinator for the Atlanta-based nonprofit Dream Center. “It’s just about when groups of men get together, usually trafficking and exploitation increases. “They’re on vacation, their wives and girlfriends aren’t with them, and it’s also a boys’ club, and it’s time for boys to boys.”
Human sex trafficking is a disturbing crime affecting both children and adults in the state. Officials say cases of sex trafficking have been on the rise since at least 2012. The latest numbers show 2018 is on track to be another record year.
Survivors of human trafficking can be children, adults, friends or neighbors and may not even know, or be able to admit, they are being or have been trafficked, Atlantic Cape Community College students learned during an informational session Wednesday morning.
Authorities involved in a 3-day human trafficking sting operation rescued almost 50 victims across California, including 14 minors, some as young as 13. Law enforcement officials with “Operation Reclaim and Rebuild” announced Tuesday they made 339 arrests in the 3-day operation, which involved 93 human trafficking task forces throughout the state. The National Human Trafficking Hotline says 8,524 cases of human trafficking were reported nationwide in 2017. Of those, 1,305 were in California.
“We have children who have been trafficked,” said Rhonda Morris, who is in her 20th year as executive director of Kids First. “This is something that has been going on for many, many years.” Kids First provides comprehensive services to victims of sexual abuse, ages 18 and younger, in seven area counties. The nonprofit served 270 new children last year, up from 253 the year before, and an average of between 210 and 225 several years before that.
With Super Bowl LIII just a week away and the city of Atlanta seeing an influx of visitors over the next week; human trafficking experts believe the problem may be growing with the crowds. But advocates are also stepping up their efforts to identify and help those who may be being trafficked…The Soap Project is an initiative that places bars of soap and wipes with the number to the human trafficking hotline in places where those who are being trafficked may frequent.
Each year, thousands of people fall victim to human trafficking in the United States. That’s not including the thousands more that go unreported. Human trafficking, also known as modern day slavery, happens everywhere… Even in Acadiana. That’s why the St Landry-Evangeline Anti-Human Trafficking Task Force is raising awareness.
Sex trafficking is a market-driven criminal industry based on supply and demand, according to the National Sex Trafficking Hotline. In other words, as long as people are willing to purchase other people for sex, there will be incentive to continue trafficking…It is common for them to target victims on social media. Young people may pour out their heartaches and problems online, creating an easy target for a trafficker.
Yes, the number of human trafficking cases handled in Cooke County over the past several years may not be staggering, but it does indicate there is a problem, according to Sgt. Jerry Crumley with the Cooke County Sheriff’s Office. “Trafficking is here,” Crumley said. “It’s everywhere. It’s growing. It’s becoming a bigger and bigger problem throughout the state of Texas.
Dozens of women and children in Jacksonville, FL. were rescued from the horrors of human trafficking last year. “Traffickers want to sell people because they want to make money. So if we can reduce demand and no one was buying human beings—that’s really how we’re going to end human trafficking,” said Kristin Keen.
The Super Bowl LIII is just over a week away. As many Americans prepare to host friends to enjoy the game, traffickers are preparing to exploit vulnerable individuals. Slavery has been around for centuries. But today…
UPS, Delta and Walmart spoke Thursday at an event hosted by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce about steps they’re taking to eliminate human trafficking and forced labor along their supply chain and use their worldwide footprint to help where they can.