This month U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) agents arrested 47 suspects in a sex-trafficking operation, including a dozen purported ringleaders, that used young women and girls in an active prostitution ring in Florida, Georgia and the Carolinas. In addition, those indicted conspired to entice women from Mexico, Nicaragua and elsewhere to travel to the U.S. with false promises of the American dream. The indictment also said the suspected gang members used cellular phones to coordinate their activities, trade women and select others to be used for various “clients.”
Eleven of the victims were rescued. “ICE investigates a wide array of crimes, but the trafficking of women and girls for prostitution is among the most sinister,” said ICE Director John Morton. “Few crimes so damage their victims and undermine basic human decency. Our fight against this evil must be relentless, both here and abroad.”
“In what essentially amounts to slavery in the year 2013, the conduct described in the indictment against these defendants is reprehensible,” said U.S. Attorney Edward Tarver in Georgia. “This case is a prime example of the United States Attorney’s Office and HSI (Homeland Security Investigations) recognizing that human trafficking is a cancer facing our society and taking a stand to stop the victimization of women involved in sex trafficking.”
HSI provides relief to victims of human trafficking by allowing for their continued presence in the United States during criminal proceedings. Victims may also qualify for a “T visa,” which is issued to victims of human trafficking who have complied with reasonable requests for assistance in investigations and prosecutions.
Learn more at Jerry Seper’s Washington Times article: Federal agents net 47 on sex-trafficking charges.