Orange County, California– A minor is safe after the persistence of a Sanger Police Officer Shaela Edwards, who followed leads when she suspected a sexual assault victim was also involved in human trafficking. The victim is now safe, and the suspected has been arrested and charged with Human Trafficking of a minor.
SAN LUIS OBISPO COUNTY, Calif. – SLO County District Attorney Dan Dow announced that seven men are facing charges for solicitation of prostitution and one is being convicted for human trafficking following an investigation earlier this year. These eight cases are the product of a statewide campaign called Operation Reclaim and Rebuild 2020.
Lake County, California– Human trafficking victims in California can now qualify for up to $20,000 in income loss paid through the California Victim Compensation Board. Signed by Gov. Gavin Newsom, Assembly Bill 629 (Smith and Gonzalez) has gone into effect to address the lasting repercussions of trafficking.
SACRAMENTO, Calif. — A federal judge on Monday sentenced a Chico man to 14 years in prison for sex trafficking of a minor and distribution of meth to a person under 21, according to the U.S. Attorney McGregor W. Scott. According to court documents and evidence presented at the trial, in July and August 2017, 25-year-old Christopher Ramonaguilar Lawrence, of Chico, recruited a then 17-year-old girl to engage in prostitution for his financial benefit.
Fremont, California — A Bay Area man is in federal custody and awaiting extradition to Texas, where he is set to face federal charges that allege he set up sex trafficking websites on an international scale, raking in $21 million in proceeds within a two-year span.
San Bernardino County, California– An undercover sting in which police posed as prostitutes at a Redlands hotel to bust “Johns” who solicited sex for money on Wednesday netted 13 suspects, ranging in age from 17 to 63, officials said. San Bernardino County Human Trafficking Task Force investigators conducted what they called an “in-call hotel ‘John’ operation,” the department said in a written statement. “During the operation, undercover officers were deployed at a local hotel to pose as prostitutes through online advertisements,” according to the statement. Online ads are a primary tool for those involved in the human trafficking of underage victims, officials added.
San Luis Obispo County officials are encouraging parents and families to be wary of commercial sexual exploitation of children (CSEC) as children are spending more time out of the classroom and on the internet during the COVID-19 pandemic. Linda Belch, adult and children’s services deputy director, says it is important for families to have open, regular conversations with children about the importance of cyber safety.
A day after a 29-year-old Vallejo resident was reported missing Solano County sheriff’s deputies rescued the woman, said to have been a victim of human trafficking.
The woman’s mother filed a report with the Sheriff’s Office on Tuesday, saying she’d been missing for a week.
On Wednesday, investigators learned she was a victim of human trafficking, officials said.
Her image was reportedly posted on a human trafficking website. In partnership with Vacaville police detectives, and FBI task force officer, sheriff’s resident deputy and the Sheriff’s Enforcement Team, investigators managed to contact the woman and set up a meeting.
“With closed businesses and empty streets, exploiters have become more violent and expanded their territory,” explains Amba Johnson, executive director of Dreamcatchers. “The ones coming to buy children are oddly indifferent to COVID, asking their victims if they have hand sanitizer and masks. The problem is Johns don’t care if they are children.”
“Traffickers notoriously prey upon the vulnerability of other people. So if you have a group of people who are now even more vulnerable and are looking to make income, secure their future, and are looking to find some type of normalization; they might be more susceptible to offers or lies or tactics traffickers use to gain that person’s trust only to exploit it later for a profit,” explained Danielle Borrelli, Operations Coordinator for the California Cybersecurity Institute.
“As we move forward to take our next steps to better identify and support youth who have experienced commercial sexual exploitation, I hope agencies across the country can apply the lessons learned by L.A. County and apply them during this COVID-19 era and provide victims the services and ongoing support that they need,” said Michelle Guymon, who founded and leads the CTU.
L.A., California- Unfortunately, during the COVID-19 pandemic, the demand for underage youth has not waivered and the Los Angeles County Probation Department continues to be at the forefront battling the recent increase of cases of commercial sexual exploitation of children, or CSEC.
ANTIOCH, CA— 30-year-old, Cedric West, is facing felony charges of human trafficking; an enhancement alleges he beat his victim, a 16-year-old girl known in court records only as “Jane Doe,” with a bottle. The charging records he “inflicted great bodily injury” in November 2018.
In Anderson, California law enforcement officers have been in a year-long investigation into Northstate massage parlors. Two men have been arrested with 58 felony counts. Last year, a citizen of Anderson reported unusual behavior. The tip led to find a human trafficking ring across three Northstate counties. Anderson police said their goal was to target the traffickers and save and rescue the woman.
The coalition aims to raise awareness about human trafficking in the Berkeley community and invited T Ortiz, one of Time Magazine’s 2013 “30 Under 30” nominees, as a keynote speaker to discuss the issue of human trafficking. Ortiz, who was a victim of trafficking herself, said society needs to realize that victims do not need pity; instead, victims need to be supported in many ways.
“We are talking about our girls,” Alejandre said at the event. “They are people too and they are not just defined by their trafficking experience.”
A man is in federal court on two counts of sex trafficking in Sacramento, California. One of them involving a child. A 30-page criminal complaint that was filed in December of 2018 has four years of sex trafficking activity. Sunnyvale Police interviewed three females that this man had been using.
In Sonoma County, California there has been an increased public outreach over the past decade to raise awareness about human trafficking. The executive director of Verity, which is a Sonoma County nonprofit offers services and support to trafficking victims and sometimes coordinates with law-enforcement agencies conducting enforcement operations said “”Human trafficking happens every single day in Sonoma County”. People think it isn’t a problem here, they think it’s a problem that happens in other places of the world. Drug dealing is the largest crime, human trafficking is number two and is more difficult to enforce. With the human trafficking industry growing rapidly, agencies and organizations are partnering up to stop this.
January is National Human Trafficking Awareness Month and O’Malley said the “Take the Pledge” campaign is a good way to start the new decade with action aimed at stopping both commercial sexual exploitation and commercial labor exploitation.
Stockton, which has become known as a hub for human trafficking in recent years, will be getting more than half a million dollars from a federal grant to help human trafficking survivors in the area find a safe haven.
A 37-year-old man has pled no contest in a human trafficking case out of Oakland, CA. The victim was a 14-year-old girl. It’s one victory in a never-ending war against the sexual exploitation of young people.
Deputies believe that Kendell Morris of Stockton, CA. had recruited the victims, groomed them to work in the sex trade with Kaylyn Melendez and Carelli Barajas are being held at the Orange County Women’s Central Jail in place of $70,000 and $75,000 bail. Morris is in custody in lieu of $1 million bail.
“I never heard from her again. She only had a week left to go before her bed opened up, but the two weeks she toughed it out waiting on the street kept her in harm’s reach,” says Saylor of San Diego, CA. who is a survivor of human trafficking.
Investigators said they responded to reports of human trafficking on Dockery Court near Rev Henry Drive in early December, where they found a 22-year-old female victim. The victim told police she was forced into human trafficking by 32-year-old Saint Marques Taylor of Stockton, CA.
The victim, a 20-year-old woman from Los Angeles County, CA. was treated for injuries and said she was assaulted by 38-year-old Sethtaniel Tyrece. Davis was involved with trafficking the woman, the San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Department said.
Benito Rodriguez Bravo, 34, of Santa Barbara County, CA. was booked on suspicion of several felonies: arranging a meeting with a minor, human trafficking of a minor, contacting a minor with intent for sex, sending harmful material to a minor with attempt to seduce, attempting to commit crime, and pandering.
A 17-year-old girl walked into the lobby of a Ventura, CA, hotel and told the front desk manager she was being held against her will by a man and a woman, Elijah Tucker, 22, and Davisha Sweat, 25, and forced into prostitution.
Marquez Thomas, 20, of Sacramento, CA, sexually exploited two 17-year-old high school girls and acted as the girls’ pimp and arranged commercial sex work for them in hotels in San Francisco, Daly City, Napa County and Reno, NV, prosecutors said.
Peter Paul Castillo, 30, and Johnette Amanda Terrell, 18, both of Los Angeles, CA, forced a 15-year-old girl, who had been reported as a runaway, into prostitution. The victim was rescued, offered immediate services and resources, then safely returned to her family.
Charles Wayne Caldwell, 37, of Sacramento, CA, has a violent past with a history of victimizing vulnerable women. Throughout the investigation the victim told police about multiple times she had been abused and forced to perform commercial sex acts.
Armand King of San Diego, CA, spent more than a decade working as a pimp. Today, King speaks publicly about his experiences in sex trafficking all over the country to law enforcement agencies and professionals. King’s personal story, told in his book, takes a look at the impact pimping and prostitution has had on communities of color.
Kevin Fuqua, who authorities wrote goes by the nickname “Knote,” was pimping a teen girl who had run away from her home in Solano County, CA. Investigators say they uncovered text messages that indicate Fuqua was physically abusing the girl. Fuqua knew the girl was underage — having attended her 17th birthday months before the arrest — and forced her to walk areas known for prostitution until she made $500 per night.
Foster Shane Gaines, 42, has pleaded guilty to operating a drug and sex trafficking ring from his prison cell in Represa, CA, where he was already serving an eight-year sentence for directing the prostitution of another woman. The trafficking ring, largely operating in Tidewater, VA, involved 10 adult women and two underage girls.
The owners, Michael James Pratt, 36, and Matthew Isaac Wolfe, 37, and two employees, Ruben Andre Garcia, 31, and Valorie Moser, 37, of two popular pornographic websites were charged this week in San Diego, CA with sex trafficking and other crimes. Using “deception and false promises” they lured women who had answered modeling advertisements on Craigslist to participate in sex videos that were posted on the internet.
Lonnel Moore, 37, of Oakland, California was convicted on Monday of human trafficking of a minor with force, pimping of a minor, inducing a minor to commit a lewd and lascivious act, and committing a lewd act on a minor. Police alleged that Moore used drugs and abusive language against the 15-year-old girl to subjugate her to the life of pimping and sex trafficking.
James Arthur Powell, 32, of Sacramento, California, had pleaded guilty to charges of trafficking a minor, pimping and pandering. In addition to the prison sentence, Powell will have to register as a sex offender. Through an investigation by the Ventura County Sheriff’s Office, it was found that Powell was trafficking the victims from Sacramento to Los Angeles and Ventura counties to engage in commercial sex activities.
Pomona, CA police working to combat human trafficking and prostitution in their city rescued the third teenage human trafficking victim in the past two weeks on Friday. “Upon further investigation, officers discovered that the female was actually a 17-year-old minor who had been the victim of human trafficking since the age of 15 years old,” the Pomona Police Department said in a written statement.
A 15-year-old female victim of human trafficking was rescued Tuesday during an undercover police operation in Pomona. Pomona police use such undercover operations to allow victims of human trafficking the opportunity to speak with law enforcement and victims’ advocates in an effort to help them relocate to safe locations.
A California man will spend the next 18 years in federal prison for sex trafficking victims in the Kansas City area. Ronald Ean Taylor pleaded guilty to sex counts of sex trafficking of an adult. He also admitted that he used force, fraud or coercion to cause six child victims to engage in prostitution.
“We’re doing creative activities that are fun, meaningful and memorable,” says Lynch. “The girls we work with, their nervous systems change. They feel excited, hopeful, elevated, open, alive. We have a front-row seat to people transforming and healing.”
Salinas, CA. police detectives found eight girls, aged 14-18, being exploited by a group of four men. Two of the girls were only 14 years old. Daniel Amaro received 14 years and Abriam Ibarra received 20 years in prison. Both were sentenced on sex trafficking charges, but Ibarra had additional charges of sex with minors.
The department says the 12-year-old was a runaway “who was possibly being sex trafficked.” “You have Comic-Con. We have a cyber patrol that we do. In three hours, we had 45 calls of buyers.” Ugarte said. These patrollers look for potential buyers on the internet and intercept them before they prey on children.
“The team just received a $100,000 donation from the Harry W. Bass Jr Foundation. The foundation says they were appalled by Jeffrey Epstein’s alleged crimes, but they found a positive way to make a difference with their donation to Pedal the Pacific.”
The leader of Mexican megachurch La Luz del Mundo was ordered held without bail Tuesday on charges of child rape and human trafficking after a historically high $50 million bail was set earlier in the case. Naasón Joaquín García is a danger to the Los Angeles, CA. community and a flight risk, Superior Court Judge David Fields ruled.
This shift is an important development, as anti-trafficking efforts have long been criticized for their disproportionate focus on communities of color. Powerful men are now being brought to account in courts across the country for an increasingly diverse array of wrongful conduct.
Stockton, CA- Joshua Tuimavave and Paul Miller were arrested on suspicion of human trafficking involving juveniles, the Stockton Police Department said Tuesday. The men were booked into jail on charges of human trafficking of a juvenile, pimping, and pandering.
Authorities are looking for additional human trafficking victims of Bryan Barkley, 23 who held a teenage girl with autism in his house against her will and had men pay to have sex with her in his South Los Angeles, CA. home. Barkley is being held in an L.A. jail on $150,000 bail, according to inmate records.
Investigators said they identified Jovantay Bess, 23, of Fresno, as responsible for sexually trafficking her during the first local incident and Cirsten Joseph, 26, of Newbury Park, as responsible in the second incident.
Angel Ortiz Diamond, 31, who goes by the name Benjiboy Staccs of Orange County, CA. was charged with one felony count of pimping and one felony count of pandering after getting a tip from a relative of the 18-year-old victim. Officials said Diamond posted videos to YouTube “with songs glorifying the pimping subculture.” He used social media to meet young women in clubs and lure them into sex-related work.
San Diego, CA- A new high-tech tool to combat sex trafficking was unveiled at the San Diego County Administration Center in Kearny Mesa Monday. The tool is a 37-foot long mobile command trailer that can be used to find and rescue victims. It holds all kinds of equipment needed during a rescue operation, including drones, electronic gear, and safety equipment.
Naason Joaquin Garcia, 50 has been arrested in Los Angeles. CA. charged with crimes including human trafficking, child pornography production and rape of a minor in the U.S. He is being held in jail on a $50m bond.
Authorities in San Jose, CA. are crediting a 14-year-old girl with helping break up a human trafficking operation in San Jose earlier this week. The teen contacted the Crisis Text Line to report that she was being held against her will and forced to engage in prostitution, according to Sgt. Enrique Garcia.
Christopher Johnson, 39 of Sacramento, and Antoine Williams, 43 of Merrillville, Indiana, were arrested and booked into Santa Clara County jail for alleged felony human trafficking, pimping and pandering and kidnapping.
The musicians real name is Anthony Denson was arrested on felony charges for human trafficking via the Los Angeles, CA. Sheriff’s Office’s records. “Sosamann” was released on a $100,000 bond after it was alleged that he brought two women to California with him and forced them to become sex workers.
Ariel Guizar-Cuellar, 38 of Los Angeles, CA. ran a criminal ring that trafficked underage girls on the now-defunct sex website Backpage.com pleaded guilty on Tuesday to a string of federal charges.
This website was seized by federal agents in 2018 as part of a wide-ranging investigation into prostitution and child sex trafficking.
A collaborative law enforcement operation between Lathrop Police Services, the San Joaquin County, CA. Sheriff’s Office and the Manteca Police Department back in February yielded nine arrests of people attempting to engage in sexual contact with a minor less than 14 years of age. Ages of suspects range from 12 yrs old to 61 yrs old.
Detectives in Santa Ana, CA. located 21 year old Malik Malveaux’s vehicle parked outside a local motel. They then found him inside a room there along with two other underage human trafficking victims, ages 13 and 15, according to police. Malveaux was arrested and booked on suspicion of human trafficking of a minor, pimping of a minor and pandering of a minor, authorities said.
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.
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.
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.
Andrew Hellums asked the child in California to perform sex acts to be photographed and sent to him, police say. She sent him multiple photos of herself engaging in sexual acts or poses, according to court documents. also sent photos of both his face and genitals to the child on multiple occasions. When the child’s father discovered the conversations on a mobile device, he contacted a California police.
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.
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.
Public schools in San Diego County will soon be playing a much bigger role in keeping students safe. Their focus is on protecting children from human traffickers. UBS Optimus Foundation, associated with UBS, a global financial services company is providing a $3 million grant to a new group called the San Diego Trafficking Prevention Collective. The goal of the Collective is to reach students through three programs that emphasize education, empowerment and intervention.
At $800 million annually, sex trafficking is second only to drug trafficking among underground economies in San Diego County, CA. They didn’t enter this nightmare with open eyes. More likely, they were lured into the life with promises of love, protection, adventure, or opportunity.
Police in Mountain View, CA. have arrested a brother and sister suspected of bringing Guatemalan families and minors to the United States and subjecting them to forced labor and sexual slavery. Carlos Garza, 33, and Evelia De Maria Galvez, 41, were arrested on Dec. 20 without incident. Garza is suspected of multiple counts of human trafficking and Galvez is suspected of being an accessory to a crime and intimidating a victim.
Former Los Angeles Dodgers general manager and vice president Kevin Malone is a passionate man. Thanks in part to pastor and Crazy Love author Francis Chan, Malone would be introduced to his new devotion — the fight to abolish child sex trafficking — in 2009.
This week, an eye-opening look at the startling scope of Human Trafficking right here in the US. It’s on the rise. Young girls are groomed and lured by drug cartel-connected thugs then sold as a product to be owned.Experts say it’s happening in every state— even in quiet towns where you wouldn’t expect it. That’s where an eclectic group of former police and Navy SEALS comes in.
An Oakland man was sentenced to 10 years and one month in federal prison Wednesday for a sex trafficking extortion scheme in which he posted ads for a young prostitute, then burst into the room where she was having sex with a man and pocketed some of the proceeds.
“Many of our clients have been charged with crimes they were forced to commit by their traffickers, or that their traffickers committed,” said San Diego attorney Jamie Quient, who started Free to Thrive last year. “They rarely speak up at the time for many reasons. Among them, they would rather serve time than cross their traffickers. They also don’t think they will be believed if they do speak up. As a result, society labels these victims as criminals.”
In Los Angeles, 85 percent of the youth picked up by law enforcement in sex trafficking raids have a history with child protective services, according to a new report that provides details on how the county serves exploited youth in the wake of new California laws.
–On Wednesday, the San Luis Obispo County District Attorney’s Office filed felony charges against Lucion Lee Edward Banks (35), for Human Trafficking and Pimping a 14-year-old female victim. The defendant is currently held at the San Luis Obispo County Jail with bail set at one million dollars.
Susan Munsey’s mission to help victims of sex trafficking in the US is a personal one. When she was 15, growing up in Los Angeles, Munsey started dating a man she thought was the real deal. “I’d never had a boyfriend before. He gave me compliments. He was charming. He took me out to eat,” she recalled. “I was insecure and didn’t have a lot of self-esteem. … And here I had this 24-year-old boyfriend. Wasn’t I something special?” Then he started abusing her. He forced her to sell her body. Months later, she was arrested for prostitution.
The San Luis Obispo County District Attorney’s Office is now reviewing the case involving an Atascadero Unified School District teacher placed on leave after being arrested on suspicion of producing child pornography.
A family of four faces 59 counts of human trafficking, rape and labor abuse connected to a trafficking ring they were allegedly running out of a California daycare center and two senior care facilities.
At 33, Elizabeth Quiroz considers herself lucky to be alive. By the time she was 16, she was a victim of human trafficking on the streets of San Francisco, and arrested for armed robbery, the first of several incarcerations.
Morales and Tion Makeise Foster met the girl online before picking her up from her hometown and transporting her to various places in Northern California where she engaged in sex acts for their financial benefit, the U.S. Attorney’s office said Monday in a news release.
A 59-year-old registered sex offender faces charges of procurement of a child under 16 for lewd and lascivious acts and supervising or aiding a prostitute after he was arrested last week, authorities said.
The Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department says 36 adults have been arrested by a human-trafficking task force that also rescued two teenage girls identified as commercially sexually exploited children.
Millions of women, men, young girls and boys around the world are currently victims of human sex trafficking, and with the crime now occurring in Lake County, Lake Family Resource Center is working to raise awareness and protect the community.
The Junior League of Santa Barbara, in partnership with Ventura County nonprofit 4 Kids 2 Kids, Inc., has opened Santa Barbara County’s first therapeutic rehabilitative shelter for young sex trafficking victims.