Torture in  [USA]  [other countries]
Human Trafficking in  [USA]  [other countries]
Street Children in  [USA]  [other countries]
Child Prostitution in  [USA]  [other countries]

Human Trafficking & Modern-day Slavery

In the early years of the 21st Century                                             



ARCHIVES   [Part 3 of 4]

CAUTION:  The following links have been culled from the web to illuminate the situation in the USA.  Some of these links may lead to websites that present allegations that are unsubstantiated or even false.  No attempt has been made to validate their authenticity or to verify their content.


US hands Lithuanian 7-year-sentence for human trafficking

Agence France-Presse AFP, 17 Aug 2007

[accessed 3 May 2012]

[accessed 13 October 2016]

Michail Aronov, 34, and his business partners "smuggled women into the United States and compelled them through threats and coercion to work as dancers in strip clubs, holding them in a condition of involuntary servitude," the department said in a statement.  The human trafficking network used the guise of a legitimate business, Beauty Search Inc., to cover their criminal conduct, it added.

"These criminals preyed upon the hopes and dreams of women who came to the US for a better life, but found only enslavement, exploitation, violence and isolation," special agent in charge of the Immigration and Customs Enforcement Office of investigations in Detroit said in the statement.

Hollywood couple sentenced in maid 'slave' case, Jan 28, 2008

[accessed 10 January 2011]

Jackson's wife Elizabeth, 54, was given a three-year jail term after pleading guilty to a charge of forced labor.   In passing sentence, Fischer said Elizabeth Jackson had treated the victim, former schoolteacher Nena Ruiz, worse than her dog.   Ruiz was forced to eat three-day-old food and to sleep on a dog basket after working 18 hours a day. Over the course of several months' employment between 2001 and 2002 she was paid only 300 dollars.   "These defendants subjected their victim to what amounts to modern-day slavery," said Justice Department prosecutor Wan Kim after the Jacksons pleaded guilty in August last year.   In a related civil lawsuit, Ruiz said Elizabeth Jackson regularly slapped her and pulled her hair.   The Jacksons also threatened to turn her over to immigration authorities if she left them, Ruiz said. Ruiz finally fled the Jacksons after she was hit in the mouth with a water bottle in February 2002.

Christian Medical Association Doctors: U.S. Government Must Link AIDS, Anti-Trafficking Efforts

Standard Newswire, WASHINGTON, August 01, 2007

[accessed 10 January 2011]

Highlighting a just-published study showing that sex slaves spread AIDS even after their rescue from human trafficking overlords and pimps, the nation's largest faith-based association of doctors today called for more concerted U.S. government action related to the link between AIDS and human trafficking.

Dr. Barrows said, "Health officials have just begun to recognize this link, and stronger emphasis is needed. Interventions aimed at eradicating sex trafficking, rescuing and restoring sex-trafficked victims, and preventing future sex trafficking need to be a more strongly emphasized strategy in the President's Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR) and other AIDS-related programs. Anti-trafficking measures should be specifically and consistently emphasized in AIDS-related grant stipulations and proposal evaluations."

Enslaved in the U.S.A. - American victims need our help

Donna M. Hughes, National Review Online, July 30, 2007

[accessed 10 January 2011]

[accessed 28 February 2018]

President Bush made combating human trafficking a priority. Both Attorney Generals Ashcroft and Gonzales have spoken out against trafficking in the U.S. and made the investigation and prosecution of trafficking a priority. Most of the focus on identifying and assisting victims and prosecuting offenders has been on foreign nationals trafficked into the U.S.  There are more American citizens than foreign nationals victimized by sex traffickers in the U.S., yet there are no federally funded services for them, particularly if they are over age 17.

Company in Pennsylvania, USA Accused of Trafficking, August 05, 2007 -- Adapted from: "Company Accused Of Human Trafficking" 16 July 2007

[accessed 10 January 2011]

Workers from Thailand say they've been made into economic slaves by the company that brought them to our area.  They're 20 men from Thailand who for the past year have picked mushrooms in Armstrong County.  They say they often did not get paid and now they must return home where they will face enormous debt.

Venture into an abandoned limestone mine in Armstrong County and you'll find hundreds of workers picking mushrooms in the dark.  It's tough work and not enough locals wanted the job so last year Creekside Mushrooms hired 20 legal guest workers from Thailand through a California company called Global Horizons.  Under the contract, Creekside paid Global but soon discovered that Global wasn't paying the workers for long stretches of time. Some nights, the men had to go fishing after work just to feed themselves.

"We made multiple phone calls to the president of the company who then chose not to return any of my calls or emails and the gentlemen just weren't getting paid," Domenic Galassi, an official with Creekside Mushroom, said.  And Galassi says their situation has become even more dire. He says each man paid upwards of $20,000 to a recruiter in Thailand to come to America on Global's promise of three years employment.

3 Arrested in Human Trafficking

FBI, Jul 3, 2007

[accessed 10 January 2011]

Some factors taken into consideration to file criminal charges against these individuals included allegations of victims receiving rationed meals of limited quantity, the acrobat performers not being paid the salary they were promised, their passports and work visas being held from them, enforcers watching and controlling the movements of the performers, and a fear of the performers that their families in China, as well as themselves, would be harmed if they attempted to leave.

Nevada man sentenced to life in prison on charges related to the sex trafficking of minors

U.S. Department of Justice, Washington, July 3, 2007 – Press Release 07-482

[accessed 10 January 2011]

The evidence at trial showed that during the first two weeks of May 2005, Doss conspired with his wife, Jacquay Quinn Ford, to transport two girls across state lines to work as prostitutes. Doss and Ford transported the victims -- one 14 and one 16 -- from Nevada to work as prostitutes in Los Angeles, Sacramento, San Francisco and Oakland. Doss recruited and transported the 16-year-old victim by the use of force.

Las Vegas Acrobatic Troupe Busted For Human Trafficking

Mark Sayre, Investigative Reporter, KLAS-TV 8 News Now

[accessed 10 January 2011]

[accessed 2 July 2017]

These allegations involve a Las Vegas-based acrobatic troupe called the China Star Acrobats. Last week, the FBI says a woman escaped from the home the troupe shared and contacted Metro police.   On Friday, the FBI and Metro descended near Desert Inn and Grand Canyon. That's where authorities say they found four adults and five juveniles being held against their will.

State struggles with legal, moral aspects of human trafficking

Brian J. Lowney, Catholic News Service, PROVIDENCE, R.I., 6/22/2007

[accessed 12 August 2014]

[accessed 28 February 2018]

"I saw the victims in the brothels," said state Rep. Joanne Giannini, recalling that many of the prostitutes were minors. "A lot of people think that it doesn't exist."  Giannini said when police have raided these facilities the women refused emergency social and medical services. "They are afraid of getting into trouble," she said.

According to Garry Bliss, director of policy and legislative affairs for Providence Mayor David N. Cicilline, efforts have been made to provide counseling and social services to the women, but they rejected them, fearing retribution from their captors – the owners of the establishments who reap big profits.

He believes most of the women to be in their 20s or 30s, and said some have probably been in this country for some time, being moved constantly from state to state. They are initially enslaved to pay off debts incurred in traveling to the United States. Often, they have come to this country assuming that they are to work as housekeepers or nannies.  "It's a hole that they can never dig themselves out of," Bliss said. "These women are not acting on their own free will."

Middle Tennessee sees rise in human trafficking

John Bowman, For The Tennessean Advertisement, 6/22/2007

[accessed 10 January 2011]

GIRLS LURED INTO SEX TRADE - As a result of November's arrests, Nashville resident Cristina Andres Perfecto pleaded guilty to two counts of commercial sex trafficking and admitted luring two Mexican girls to the United States by telling them they would be employed at a restaurant in Nashville.

Perfecto admitted she knew all along that the girls, who were 13 and 17, would be coerced to engage in prostitution in brothels in Memphis and Nashville. Perfecto said physical force and threats against the victims and their families were used to force the girls to engage in prostitution.

Woman Pleads Guilty to Human Trafficking Related Charges

The U.S. At6torney's Office, Southern District of Texas, News Release, June 5, 2007

[accessed 10 January 2011]

[accessed 28 February 2018]

Olga Mondragon is a 47-year-old El Salvadoran national.  She and her co-defendants conspired with others to smuggle female illegal aliens from Central America to Houston.  Once in Houston, Olga Mondragon, working with other co-defendants held the women and girls in a condition of servitude in bars owned by the conspirators until the women had paid their smuggling debts to the defendants.  The defendants used threats of harm to the women and their families to keep the women in a condition of servitude. Specifically, Olga Mondragon and her co-defendants threatened that the women's families or children would pay the consequences if any of the young women attempted to leave before paying their smuggling debts, including threats of kidnapping and threats to report the young women to dangerous co-conspirators who could have people killed or burn people's houses down.

Falling Short of the Mark: An International Study on the Treatment of Human Trafficking Victims [PDF]

The Future Group, March 2006

[accessed 10 January 2011]

UNITED STATES - The United States is complying with its international obligations under the Trafficking Protocol for the protection of victims of human trafficking. Increasing approval rates for victims seeking residency and support are encouraging signs that the system is working and not being abused. The integration of government and civil society support, which receives some government funding as well, has had encouraging results. There are some concerns about the needs of child victims which warrant attention, as well as the degree of pressure put on victims to cooperate with law enforcement officials.

RESIDENCE - Under the Trafficking Victims Protection Act (.TVPA.)78 and Trafficking Victims Protection Reauthorization Act (.TVPRA.),79 the U.S. Department of Homeland Security may issue .T-Visas. to allow victims of .severe forms of human trafficking. To remain in the country in order to provide assistance in federal investigations and prosecutions of those responsible for the harm they have suffered. After three years of having T-Visa status, victims may apply for permanent residency. Victims may, in some cases, also apply for non-immigrant status for their spouses and children; or, in the case of victims under 21 years old, their parents.

Fooled Into Sex Trafficking: Female Mexican Immigrants in San Antonio, Texas

Guillermo Contreras, Express-News online, 06/02/2007

[accessed 12 August 2014]

How's $600 to buy what you'd like simply for accompanying men on trips? We can make it happen, al otro lado — on the other side.  That pitch allegedly made by a trio of women sounded like gold to some impressionable teens and a young woman not making much in Nuevo Laredo, Mexico.  Three girls agreed to be smuggled to the United States in mid-May and once they were in or near San Antonio, they were primped, new clothes were bought for them and they were given English lessons. Their understanding was that they did not have to have sex with the men.

But rather than the glitz they were promised, they were sold in an underground world for prostitution, according to prosecutors and documents filed in federal court Friday.  The girls were delivered to a man in San Antonio referred to in court records as the "boss," who had them strip, inspected their bodies and told them they were going to be having sex with men for up to five years to pay off their smuggling debt.  The "boss" said he had paid $3,000 apiece for two of the girls and said he would pay even more to get them ready for other men, witnesses told investigators, according to their statements. Anyone who fled would die, and their families would also suffer the same fate, the statements said.  – HTUSAMX

Laws Block Trafficking; Sexual Terror Ignored

Alison Bowen and Nouhad Moawad, Women's eNews, 05/26/07

[accessed 12 August 2014]

[accessed 28 February 2018]

The report found that half of all states' laws now make trafficking a felony, nine state laws provide restitution to victims and 11 states enacted laws providing for victim protection. Many Midwestern states, including Missouri, Iowa, Minnesota and Nebraska, had additional laws such as those to regulate travel service providers that facilitate sex tourism.

Report Card on State Action to Combat International Trafficking [PDF]

Center For Women Policy Studies, US PACT (Policy Advocacy to Combat Trafficking) Program, May 2007

[accessed 15 February 2016]

Each state therefore received five letter grades, one for each type of law — criminalization, victim protection and services, statewide interagency task force, regulation of international marriage brokers, and regulation of travel service providers that promote sex tourism. Each state’s individual report card includes a brief analysis of the state’s legislation and includes recommendations for improvements.

Fourth Chinese National Pleads Guilty to Trafficking-Related Charge

U.S. Department of Justice, Washington, May 23, 2007 – Press Release 07-380

[accessed 15 February 2016]

Each defendant acknowledged in his or her plea having a role in recruiting and arranging travel and immigration documents for Chinese females to travel to American Samoa to engage in prostitution. Upon arrival, the victims, who were unpaid, were denied access to their passports and return airline tickets, and were denied the opportunity to leave until they had paid off increasing debts.

Beatings, Isolation and Fear: The Life of a Slave in the U.S.

Pierre Thomas, Jack Date and Theresa Cook, ABC News, May 21, 2007

[accessed 10 January 2011]

Evelyn Chumbow was once a slave, but not in some distant country. She worked right here in the United States.  Chumbow, now 21, was brought to suburban Maryland in 1996 from her native Cameroon by Theresa Mubang. Mubang promised Chumbow's family that if 11-year-old Evelyn came to America, she would have the prospect of a bright future and a first-rate education, as she had been a top student in her native country.

Wealthy N.Y. Couple Charged With Slavery

Frank Eltman, Associated Press AP, Garden City, NY, May 23, 2007

[accessed 10 January 2011]

The women, prosecutors said, were subjected to beatings, had scalding water thrown on them and were forced to repeatedly climb up stairs as punishment for perceived misdeeds. In one case, prosecutors said, one of the women was forced to eat 25 hot chili peppers at one time.

One of the women also told authorities they were forced to sleep on mats in the kitchen and were fed so little, they had to steal food.

The women legally arrived in the United States on B-1 visas in 2002; the Sabhnanis then confiscated their passports and refused to let them leave their home, authorities said. Identified in court papers as Samirah and Nona, the women said they were promised payments of $200 and $100 a month, but federal prosecutors said they were never given money directly. One of the victims' daughters living in Indonesia was sent $100 a month, prosecutors said.

Human Trafficking on Long Island, NY, May 17, 2007 -- Adapted from: Carrie Mason-Draffen. "Target of federal task force." Newsday. 16 May 2007

[accessed 10 January 2011]

[accessed 28 February 2018]

The Long Island group was born in the fall of 2004, just months after the arrests of a couple on Long Island in what was then considered one of the largest human-trafficking cases in the country.

Mariluz Zavala and her husband, Jose Ibanez, later pleaded guilty to smuggling 69 fellow Peruvian immigrants and enslaving them in Amityville, Brentwood and Coram. Both are in prison; Zavala was given 15 years, even longer than prosecutors asked for.

Most Wanted Women: Human Trafficking Mastermind

April 30, 2007

[accessed 10 January 2011]

The Federal Bureau of Investigations says this Guatemalan national lured twelve women -- three mere minors -- with the promise of the American dream.  "What they would do is go to these countries to the rural areas and recruit women with the promise here and making good money."  After crossing the border, promised dreams quickly turned in to nightmares as the victims were forced into street prostitution to work off their smuggling fee.

"Often times they were physically abused if they tried to leave they were beaten up."

Trafficking victims spurn help

Jose Cardenas, St. Petersburg Times, April 15, 2007

[accessed 10 January 2011]

[accessed 28 February 2018]

But local investigators are finding that victims of human trafficking don't surface easily.

In the six months since World Relief got a $450,000 grant from the U.S. Department of Justice to help survivors in the region, none have been found.

Human trafficking called a concern for N. Texas

Tod Robberson, The Dallas Morning News, April 11, 2007

[accessed 19 June 2013]

[accessed 28 February 2018]

Given Kachepa, 20, of Zambia said he was lured out of his country nine years ago by a Sherman-based Christian group that promised him a better life in the United States. When he and 10 other boys got here, they were organized into a choir that toured the nation, earning large fees for the ministry.

Regardless of sickness or fatigue, they were required to perform up to seven concerts a day, with no payment.

"If we did not sing, the choir manager would say, 'No singing, no food,' and he would turn off the gas for the stove so we couldn't cook," Mr. Kachepa said. "Sometimes we went for three days without having anything to eat."

Modern day slave trade: Human trafficking continues, even in the U.S.

[access date unavailable]

According to a report published on the Central Intelligence Agency Web site, “International Trafficking in Women to the United States: A Contemporary Manifestation of Slavery and Organized Crime,” 45,000-50,000 women and children are brought to the United States as slaves every year. The document also reported that the majority of these victims come from Latin American and Southeast Asia, although there has been a recent influx of trafficking from Central and Eastern Europe. “After drug dealing, trafficking of humans is tied with arms dealing as the second largest criminal industry in the world, and is the fastest growing,” states the United States Department of Health & Human Services Web site.

International Trafficking in Women to the United States: A Contemporary Manifestation of Slavery and Organized Crime

Amy O’Neill Richard, DCI Exceptional Intelligence Analyst Program, U.S. State Department Bureau of Intelligence  and  Research, November 1999

[accessed 28 February 2018]

INTRODUCTION -- Trafficking of women and children for the sex industry and for labor is prevalent in all regions of the United States. An estimated 45,000 to 50,000 women and children are trafficked annually to the United States, primarily by small crime rings and loosely connected criminal networks. The trafficked victims have traditionally come from Southeast Asia and Latin America; however, increasingly they are coming from the New Independent States and Central and Eastern Europe.

Trafficking to the US is likely to increase given weak economies and few job opportunities in the countries of origin; low risk of prosecution and enormous profit potential for the traffickers; and improved international transportation infrastructures. Though it may be impossible to eradicate trafficking to the US, it is possible to diminish the problem significantly by targeted prevention and micro-credit strategies in the source countries; strengthening the penalties and laws against traffickers in this country; and enhancing assistance and protections for the victims.

Modern-Day Slavery in America

Russell Goldman, ABC News, March 26, 2007

[accessed 12 August 2014]

Yes, There Are Slaves in the United States, and the Problem Is Getting Worse.

Emily Nicely, 19, was routinely beaten with broom handles, a metal pipe, belts and wooden boards.  She was forced to quit school, to do chores and deliver newspapers without pay. She was by any definition - including those of the federal government and the family that held her captive for six months - a slave.

Man charged with human trafficking

Amber Mobley, St. Petersburg Times, Tampa, March 16, 2007

[accessed 10 January 2011]

Carter said human trafficking "is something that is coming to our attention more due to the fact that we have a growing diverse population within Hillsborough County that could potentially be victims." Victims generally do not report the crime, because they are in the country illegally, she said.

State mobilizes to fight human trafficking

Bruce Finley, Denver Post, 02/27/2007

[accessed 10 January 2011]

The problem: Trafficking has proved hard to detect. Victims typically fear retribution and clam up, experts say. Unlike smuggling, trafficking involves confiscation of travel documents and other coercion.  The U.S. State Department estimates 14,500 to 17,500 foreign workers are brought into the country each year via trafficking - part of a $9 billion global criminal trade exceeded only by illegal arms and drug dealing.

The victims of human trafficking

[access information unavailable]

“I felt more like a slave,” he told 11 News in Spanish.  While often invisible, the stories are strikingly similar.  “They were making sure I was so scared so that I wouldn’t walk out, or immigration would come get me.  “It was really hard for more it was tiring my feet had blisters,” Diego said.

At just 14, Diego journeyed alone from Honduras to El Paso with an American dream, one that quickly turned into a nightmare when ranchers took him in and forced him to clean stalls seven days a week, he said.

WJZ Investigates Sex Trafficking

Vic Carter, WJZ-Baltimore, CBS Broadcasting, Feb 23, 2007

At one time this article had been archived and may possibly still be accessible [here]

[accessed 13 September 2011]

19-year-old Chantee was hanging out with two friends in downtown Baltimore. They decided to go for a ride with an older man, who was a friend of a friend. They thought they were going for a joy ride, but it would become much more than that.

Human trafficking and slavery still active practices

Sara Kincaid, Bismarck Tribune, February 21, 2007

[accessed 10 January 2011]

People can be sold repeatedly, Atkinson said. This creates a tier of markets and prices, based on how worn a person has become in the sex or labor trade, he said. In the sex trade, people get sold overseas when they reach the lower prices.  “From there, they die and never come back,” he said.

Human Trafficking Plaguing Maryland

Vic Carter, WJZ-Baltimore, CBS Broadcasting, Feb 21, 2007

At one time this article had been archived and may possibly still be accessible [here]

[accessed 13 September 2011]

Lidia and her daughters came to Maryland from Asia to get married to a man they thought they could trust. But when the three arrived, he made them his personal servants. He beat them and fed them only once a day. "We were kept in one room, me and my daughters", said Lidia.  The man also seized their passports, and while Lidia was forced to work outside the home for no money her children did house chores. "Each day I came home I had a scary feeling, that I might not see my kids."

Human Trafficking Victims May be Hidden in Plain Sight

Kate Ryan, WTOP Radio, Rockville, Md, February 20, 2007

[accessed 11 January 2011]

They are kidnapped, branded and forced into prostitution. Or they are lured from their home countries to the U.S. with the promise of jobs as nannies and housekeepers and then, "once they get to the United States, it turns into quite a nightmare."

Man pleads guilty to smuggling women for prostitution in brothel ring

Associated Press AP, Austin, Texas, 2/10/2007

[accessed 11 January 2011]

The ringleaders sneaked hundreds of women into the United States, most of them from Latin American countries, and forced them to have sex with as many as 40 men a day, according to the court documents. They moved the women from brothel to brothel and kept the earnings.  "The prostitutes reported they were not free to leave the brothels on their own, and the brothel operators were usually armed with firearms," according to the filing.

Lawsuit accuses Connecticut nursery of human trafficking

John Christoffersen, Associated Press AP, February 8th, 2007

[accessed 11 January 2011]

A dozen Guatemalan workers filed a federal lawsuit Thursday accusing one of the nation's largest nurseries of engaging in human trafficking by forcing them to work nearly 80 hours per week, paying them less than minimum wage and denying them medical care for injuries on the job.

The workers, who filed the lawsuit against Imperial Nurseries in Granby and its labor recruiter, say they were promised jobs planting trees in North Carolina for $7.50 per hour. Instead, they say they were taken in a van to Connecticut without their consent, had their passports confiscated so they would not escape and were threatened with arrest or deportation.

"These workers came here lawfully to earn a living and support their families," said Nicole Hallett, a Yale Law School student helping the workers. "Instead they were defrauded and trapped into conditions of forced labor."

U.S. intensifies fight against human trafficking

Terry Frieden, Cable News Network CNN, Washington, February 1, 2007

[accessed 11 January 2011]

A senior U.S. Justice Department official estimated about 15,000 victims of human trafficking arrive in the United States annually, some as young as 9 years old, destined for jobs in brothels, as unpaid domestic servants, or in other jobs as virtual slaves.

The victims represent a source of continuing income for the rings that provide them, making human trafficking more attractive than drug smuggling to some criminal syndicates, authorities said.

Tall Americano, Hold the Paycheck

Sarah Stuteville, co-founder of The Common Language Project, Seattle Weekly News, Jan 31 2007

[accessed 19 June 2013]

A Tacoma teen's coffee shop servitude shows that human trafficking isn't just about sex slaves.

When Abdenasser "Sammy" Ennassime returned home to visit his family in Morocco six years ago, he could brag of a bustling coffee shop, a baby son, and an American wife to show for his more than two decades in the United States.  In this light, Ennassime's suggestion to bring his adolescent niece, Lamyaá, to his home in Tacoma to help with the new baby—in return for enrolling her in school and guiding her toward U.S. citizenship—was seen as the magnanimous gesture of a generous uncle.

Woman Pleads Guilty to Forcing Juvenile Girls Into Prostitution In Memphis

PRNewswire-USNewswire, WASHINGTON, Jan. 29, 2007

[accessed 11 January 2011]

At her plea hearing, Perfecto admitted that she told the girls, who were 13 and 17 years of age at the time, that they would be employed at a restaurant in Nashville, knowing all along that the girls would be coerced to engage in prostitution in brothels in Memphis and Nashville.  Perfecto further admitted that co-defendant Juan Mendez then used physical force and threats against the victims and their families to force the victims to engage in prostitution.

Legislation targets human trafficking in state

Gordon Fraser, Eagle-Tribune, January 14, 2007 -- Sources: U.S. State Department & U.S. Department of Justice

[accessed 11 January 2011]

[accessed 2 March 2018]

Bradley and O'Dell, of Litchfield, were convicted in 2003 of forcing four Jamaican men to work for their tree-cutting business. The men lived in unsanitary and unsafe conditions, and received no pay for their work, according to Zuckerman. Both Bradley and O'Dell were sentenced to five years, 10 months in prison.

The slaves of New York

Errol Louis, Columnist, NY Daily News, January 14, 2007

[accessed 12 August 2014]

Albany needs to wake up and pass a law that will quash human traffickers and protect the most vulnerable.  Human slavery - not just crummy pay and lousy work conditions, but outright forced servitude, including the kidnapping, buying and selling of people - is going on in New York City, which is a major hub and destination in a monstrous, global slave trade.  The modern resurgence of this ancient horror will continue for exactly as long as cynical politicians and an apathetic public allow it.

"Pimps promise to smuggle the impressionable girls into the United States, telling them they can get jobs as nannies, cooks and maids - making enough money to support their families back home," Bode wrote. "These traffickers charge the girls as much as $7,500 in illicit crossing fees - but once they get to the United States, the girls are raped and forced into prostitution.  By the time the girls realize they have been kidnapped, it's too late for them to escape."

Human trafficking is 'alive and well' in U.S.

Maura Possley, Bradenton Herald, Manatee, January 14, 2007

[accessed 11 January 2011]

Human trafficking most commonly is found in the sex trade, but also plagues the lives of farmworkers, domestic servants and hotel and restaurant workers.  The $10 billion annual revenue generated through human trafficking, Colletti said, can start like it did for a Chinese girl, "Maria."

Maria is not her name but is a documented example of trafficking. She was sold in China for $2,000 and taken to France. She was then shipped to the United States, where she was sold to her owner for $8,000.  Maria logged 12-hour days in a Florida manufacturing company and received $20 per week. She earned $55,000 annually for her owner but had to pay from her own pocket for housing and food.

New Yorkers Draw Attention to Human Trafficking

Marianne McCune, WNYC News, New York, NY, January 11, 2007

[accessed 15 February 2016]

REPORTER: Human trafficking is a crime, but there's no state law against it - only federal authorities can go after the people who force women to prostitute themselves. But federal prosecutors don't have the resources to go after low profile, smaller-scale traffickers, so Jane Manning of Equality Now says it's outrageous that New York hasn't joined 21 other states and made it a crime.

MANNING: There are traffickers all over NYC getting way with it.

REPORTER: New York is a hub for traffickers but when police encounter prostitutes here, they're not trained to recognize which are victims of trafficking and they have little power to go after the trafficker.

Thais Receive Compensation and Visas in Los Angeles Human Trafficking Case, April 04, 2007 -- Adapted from: Gred Risling.  "Thai workers get money, visas in LA human trafficking settlement." Mercury News. 8 December 2006

[accessed 11 January 2011]

[accessed 2 March 2018]

Ten people were hired to work on the Bay Bridge retrofit by Trans Bay, a manufacturer of hinge pipe beams. Others worked in two Thai restaurants owned by Kim in the Los Angeles area. The restaurant workers were kept in safe houses where they slept on floors and were given scraps of food, Martorell said. Some of them were paid about $200 over three months, despite working seven days a week, 10 hours a day, she said.  It wasn't until one of them escaped and went to the Thai community center that an investigation was launched.

Officials decry trafficking of women for sex [PDF]

W. Zachary Malinowski, The Providence Journal, Providence, November 29, 2006

[accessed 3 May 2012]

[accessed 2 March 2018]

Campbell said the women work, sleep and eat in the dingy massage parlors that are run from storefronts near the State House, downtown and on South Main Street.

“They work from the time they get up til the time they go to bed,” he said. “They don’t go home at night.” Campbell said the women, mostly between the ages of 20 and 50, sleep on mattresses and cook from Sterno cans in the back rooms.

Feds raid human trafficking ring

Rocky Mountain News, November 22, 2006

[accessed 12 August 2014]

Citing unnamed law enforcement sources, CBS 4 News said the raid disrupted the ring that allegedly has imported hundreds of Korean women into the United States and forced them into prostitution as a means to pay off their debts.

The women were charged up to $18,000 to get into the country, according to CBS 4 News reporter Brian Maass.

The station reported dozens of the women were working throughout the metro area, advertising on adult Web sites and through word of mouth.

Human trafficking cases increase in El Paso

Louie Gilot, Libertas, November 12, 2006

[accessed 8 January 2011]

Gardes showed the photograph of a field worker standing on top of a large farm truck -- a scene common across the Southwest. His name is Ricardo, she said. He was smuggled across the border in Arizona and abandoned in the desert for eight days with only three days' worth of food and water. He was found by another smuggler who offered to guide him, for a fee. When Ricardo couldn't pay, the smuggler sold him to a Florida labor contractor for $1,100.  This became Ricardo's debt. He worked in a field for $80 a week to repay it. At the same time, his trafficker overcharged him for rent and other necessities. Gardes said he was never meant to be able to repay the debt.  One day, another trafficking victim escaped, was recaptured and was beaten in front of Ricardo and the others. "At this point, Ricardo realized this was really slavery," Gardes said.

Human Trafficking Charges Filed

The New York Sun, November 2, 2006

[accessed 11 January 2011]

The immigrants were charged between $13,000 and $19,500. Those who failed to repay their smuggling debts were physically threatened, a federal prosecutor, Winston Chan, said yesterday at the arraignment.  In one instance, a defendant, Oktavian Kupchanko, said he would have the wife and daughters of one of the immigrants raped because the immigrant was behind on his debts, according to a court papers filed by prosecutors.

Human trafficking focus of workshop

[accessed 12 August 2014]

Part of the problem has been that those smuggled into this country, whether on promises of a better life, other false pretenses or coercion, have largely been treated as criminals themselves, he said. The victims have faced prostitution charges and in the case of them being here illegally, face deportation back to their own country where living conditions could be equally bad or worse.

The image of the victim as criminal seems to be changing, largely prompted by a federal law change in 2000 that Gilbert said establishes provisions for treating the victims as refugees. The provisions include the possibility of a special trafficking visa and the prospects of housing and employment assistance and medical and mental health services, if needed.

The idea is to take a new approach to an old problem by bringing in social services and law enforcement on the ground level, identifying indicators of possible trafficking so that the traffickers can be caught and those that they smuggled in can be helped.

Human Trafficking in Minnesota

Susan Gaertner, Ramsey County Attorney, Minneapolis Star Tribune, October 9, 2006

At one time this article had been archived and may possibly still be accessible [here]

[accessed 13 September 2011]

Minnesota social service groups have assisted up to 500 sex trafficking victims and 55 labor trafficking victims in the past three years, according to results of a study issued last month by the state Department of Public Safety and reported in the Sept. 16 Star Tribune. The study confirms my experience as a prosecutor that human trafficking is a much bigger issue than had been imagined in our state.

Trafficking victims may be desperately poor, dependent on drugs, in a country illegally, or just a kid running away from home. Whatever the vulnerabilities, traffickers create situations in which their victims are nearly powerless -- from beating, raping and starving them, to hooking them on drugs, to taking away their passports or other documents and threatening to deport them.

Federal human trafficking bust implicates downtown establishment

Jennifer Park, The Brown Daily Herald, April 26, 2007

[accessed 26 August 2011]

Many of the women who were brought to the United States to work in such establishments came from Korea in the hopes of making money to support their families but were caught in the grasps of debt bondage and sold their bodies to pay off transportation costs, according to the Department of Justice press release. Brothel owners and managers often confiscated the women's identification and travel documents, and some of the women worked under threats of harm to their families back home.

Woman Gets 10 Years For Human Trafficking

Anthony M. Destefano, Newsday, 9/29/06

[accessed 11 January 2011]

A tearful woman was sentenced to just over 10 years in federal prison Friday for her role in a human trafficking operation that enticed women from Korea to come to the U.S. to work as hostesses at a Flushing bar.

Anti-Human Trafficking Law Helps Workers But Many Still Afraid

Associated Press AP, FORT MYERS, FL, 9/25/2006

[accessed 12 August 2014]

Advocates say the public is increasingly aware of the plight of young girls kidnapped or tricked into working in brothels. They say, however, that too often the cases of farm workers forced to work off ballooning smuggling debts through fraud or coercion are shrugged off as part of the illegal immigration issue.

Officials name sex slave suspect

Gil Brady, Casper Star Tribune, Jackson, September 21, 2006

[accessed 11 January 2011]

Investigators say the girl, who was 13 years old at the time, told a teenage girlfriend, also alleged to have been smuggled and forced to have sex for money with many men here, of her plan to escape to Mexico. Affidavits say the friend informed one or both of their captors, a reportedly 32-year-old Idaho carpenter and a 42-year-old Jackson restaurateur -- both in custody -- of the escape plan. That caused the alleged coyote-ringleaders to threaten to kill a man the 13-year-old victim said she “had met and liked” in Phoenix if she tried to run away, the documents say.

5 Charged In Alleged Human Trafficking Scheme

KMBC-TV, Kansas City, Mo., September 19, 2006

[accessed 11 January 2011]

Authorities said that the victims thought they had signed up for a student-work program, where they could earn as much as $10,000 over the summer. Instead, they allegedly worked 13-hour days, seven days a week. One student earned what amounted to 87 cents an hour.

In addition, investigators said that eight of them shared two, one-bedroom apartments that had a television and a mattress.  "The defendants cut the students off from nearly all forms of communication -- no telephone, no Internet," Schlozman said.  Investigators said the students were also told their movements were being tracked by a global positioning system device.

Don’t sweep human trafficking under the rug

Editorial, September 15, 2006

[accessed 11 January 2011]

Media coverage of human trafficking has alternated between the polar extremes of nonexistence and hysteria — a New York Times Magazine story in 2004, for example, referred to an “epidemic” of trafficking and published numbers that, in retrospect, seem grossly inflated.

The irresponsible use of the word “epidemic,” a hallmark of trend journalism, takes the emphasis away from where it should be. The issue isn’t the statistically dubious claim that human trafficking and sexual servitude are swelling uncontrollably in the United States, it’s that the situation exists at all.

Fear-mongering and hysteria are not helpful. What is helpful is the approach taken by the D.A.’s office and Jewish Coalition: Find a way to get these women away from their captors and set aside money for such programs — as new state laws do — while energetically prosecuting human traffickers.

Human trafficking investigated in American Samoa

Radio New Zealand International RNZI News, 10 September, 2006

[accessed 11 January 2011]

Court affidavits filed in the government’s case against two Chinese nationals believed to be a the forefront of the prostitution ring indicate that young Chinese women were promised jobs at a store.  They instead were forced in to prostitution.

Human trafficking is the new face of slavery in America

Malea Hargett, Editor, Arkansas Catholic. September 9, 2006

[accessed 15 February 2016]

In Arkansas, awareness of trafficking abuse is low -- but it's probably happening out there. Immigrants and women are at highest risk. Catholic Charities is collaborating with the FBI and other organizations in the Arkansas Civil Rights Working Group to raise awareness and help spot cases.

Anti-trafficking expert teaches training course

Janine Zeitlin, Naples Daily News, August 18, 2006

[accessed 11 January 2011]

Another emerging problem in the human trafficking world is gangs, he said. California gangs are starting to venture into the lucrative crime by recruiting girls from U.S. elementary and high schools into prostitution with the promise of good money and nice clothes, he said. But conditions soon change and girls are forced to stay, he said. Some girls are trafficked out of state, said Castro, noting that San Diego law enforcers have three or four such open investigations.

5 D.C. Spas Raided In Human-Trafficking Case & Associated Press AP, Washington, August 16, 2006

At one time this article had been archived and may possibly still be accessible [here]

[accessed 13 September 2011]

[scroll down]

Authorities have 31 people in custody and more than 70 suspected Korean sex slaves were freed. Investigators said the suspects smuggled Korean women through Canada and Mexico. To help pay off their smuggling fee, the women were forced to work in brothels in seven states -- including Maryland -- and the District.

Seen, but not heard

Miriam Rozen, Texas Lawyer, August 7, 2006

[Last accessed 11 January 2011]

[accessed 2 March 2018]

At the recent sentencing hearing of Mi Na Malcolm, the madam's victims — women who worked as prostitutes at Dallas brothels — finally had the chance to tell a federal judge about their horrific experiences since coming to the United States.  Yet they did not speak.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Sarah Saldana recalls that the four women, who had worked in this country without proper documentation, told her they were too afraid to talk in the Dallas courtroom — even though they faced no criminal charges themselves, and telling their stories to the judge might bolster their visa applications. Such victims often fear retribution from those who kept them captive, and they don't trust the authorities to help them, Saldana says.

Immigrant sisters admit charges in human trafficking

John P. Martin, Star-Ledger Staff, August 04, 2006

[accessed 12 August 2014]

Two Honduran sisters admitted yesterday that they helped smuggle dozens of illegal female immigrants -- some as young as 14 -- into the United States, then forced them to live together and work at North Jersey bars.

The admissions by Noris Elvira and Ana Luz Rosales-Martinez, during a federal court hearing in Trenton, brought to five the number of guilty pleas in what authorities say was a case of indentured servitude.

Under questioning from prosecutors, the women said they helped oversee dozens of illegal Hondurans who were forced to work six days a week and live in cramped Hudson County apartments until they could repay smuggling fees as high as $20,000.

The immigrants earned $5 an hour, plus tips, by dancing and drinking with male patrons at bars in Union City and Guttenberg. One ring member said the girls were encouraged to prostitute themselves; another said they were beaten if they ignored the house rules.

Woman sentenced to 10 years in human trafficking case

Associated Press AP Worldstream, Dallas, July 19, 2006

[accessed 11 January 2011]

A Korean woman who admitted making illegal immigrant women pay off their smuggling debt through prostitution was sentenced today in Dallas to ten years in prison.  Mi Na Malcolm, known as Sora, also was ordered to pay a 460-thousand dollar fine. She must forfeit a B-M-W, a Lexus, more than 218-thousand dollars in cash, and electronic equipment.

3 men sentenced for roles in bar prostitution ring

Harvey Rice, Houston Chronicle, Houston, TX, July 18, 2006

[partially accessed 11 January 2011 - access restricted]

Two members of a ring that smuggled Central and South American women into the United States and forced them into prostitution were sentenced to a maximum of five years in prison. A third was sentenced to four years.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Ruben Perez said the case is evidence of a major shift toward more aggressive investigation and prosecution of human trafficking cases since the formation of the alliance of law enforcement agencies and nongovernmental organizations that work with victims.

What is FREE?


[accessed 11 January 2011]

New York City is an ethnically diverse city with a large population of undocumented migrants, some who may have been trafficked.  Although statistics are difficult to ascertain, New York City is considered to be a main port of entry and transit area for trafficking because of its airports, rail and bus stations, and ports.  In a report on human trafficking in the United States published in 2000 by the United States Central Intelligence Agency (CIA), John F. Kennedy (JFK) International Airport is listed as one of the top five ports of entry for victims of trafficking in the United States.

Human Trafficking

Federal News Radio, 1500 AM,  July 12, 2006

[accessed 11 January 2011]

In June 2004, Senzatimore's group initiated an investigation into a suspected trafficking organization operating out of Long Island, New York. They found the largest human trafficking operation ever uncovered in the United States.

Thanks to their work, the trafficking ring has been dismantled, the leader of this effort is behind bars, and more than 80 people, including several children, have been freed from this modern-day slavery.

Defense Department Combats Human Trafficking

Steven Donald Smith, American Forces Press Service, Washington, June 22, 2006

At one time this article had been archived and may possibly still be accessible [here]

[accessed 13 September 2011]

Trafficking in persons is a commercial trade where human beings are subjected to involuntary acts such as prostitution or indentured servitude, which many feel constitutes a modern form of slavery. Force, fraud and coercion are methods used by traffickers to obtain and recruit persons.   McGinn said the Defense Department is focused on two areas: the overseas sex exploitation industry near U.S. areas of operations and the employment practices of civilian contractors supporting DoD operations overseas.

McGinn said the department is concerned about trafficking in persons for labor purposes, and stressed that it is important that defense contractors overseas do not take advantage of trafficked labor.   The human trafficking rule contained in the Defense Federal Acquisition Regulation gives the overseas commander the contract management tools necessary to hold contractors accountable for their labor practices and their employees' actions, she said.

U.S. cash fuels human trade

Cam Simpson and Aamer Madhani, Chicago Tribune, 9 October 2005

[accessed 12 August 2014]

American tax dollars and the wartime needs of the U.S. military are fueling an illicit pipeline of cheap foreign labor, mainly impoverished Asians who often are deceived, exploited and put in harm's way in Iraq with little protection.

Conference Held on Human Trafficking

Reported by Angela An, ONN-TV News, Jun 20 2006

Click [here] to access the article.  Its URL is not displayed because of its length

[accessed 13 August 2014]

Tina Frundt with the Polaris Project says, You get tired of every day and living, you get tired of someone beating you every day, you get tired of sleeping with twenty to thirty men every day, you get tired and you hit rock bottom.

Frundt was only 14 when a man in Cleveland forced her into commercial sex. Today, she calls herself a survivor of human trafficking.

Human Trafficking In North Texas

Jack Fink Reporting, CBS 11 News, Jun 12, 2006

At one time this article had been archived and may possibly still be accessible [here]

[accessed 13 September 2011]

The changes also acknowledged they held women against their will at their $330,000 Coppell house. The couple watched them closely with video surveillance cameras at their house and business and had employees guard the exits.  Federal agents arrested the Changs in April of last year after one of the five women being held inside the house managed to escape. Prosecutors say she jumped out of a second floor window.

Coalition to battle human trafficking

Saundra Amrhein, St. Petersburg Times, Fort Myers, June 9, 2006

[accessed 11 January 2011]

Many victims fear coming forward because captors threaten to kill them and their families. Some victims are U.S. citizens - runaways or homeless. Others face language and cultural barriers, she said.  During the past 11 months, Rodriguez's coalition has worked with nine victims in Florida from Mexico, Honduras and Guatemala - two adults, six girls and a boy, she said.

Legalizing Human Trafficking

Basav Sen [freelance writer and activist in Washington, D.C.], Dollars & Sense, 2006/0506

At one time this article had been archived and may possibly still be accessible [here]

[accessed 13 September 2011]

For six months, Francisco* was a prisoner of his employers. He was housed in a trailer in rural central Florida with six other men from Mexico, Guatemala, and Honduras. He would work from dawn until dusk picking oranges, earning an unbelievable $15 a week. He and his fellow workers were watched by armed guards and repeatedly threatened that they would be killed if they tried to run away.

Vigilance Needed in Fight Against Human Trafficking

New America Media, Commentary, Hediana Utarti and Kavitha Sreeharsha, San Francisco, May 29, 2006

[accessed 26 August 2011]

The maid revealed that despite being promised a part-time job and a work visa, her employer paid far less than minimum wage, did not offer breaks, held her travel documents, isolated her from calling her family, and threatened to call the police and immigration authorities. She spoke little English and had no idea who she could call for help.

Wisconsin Couple Convicted on Human Trafficking Charges

U.S. Department of Justice, Washington, May 26, 2006 – Press Release 06-332

[accessed 12 January 2011]

The Justice Department today announced the conviction of a Wisconsin couple, Jefferson and Elnora Calimlim, on human trafficking charges for using threats of serious harm and physical restraint against a Philippine woman to obtain her services as their domestic servant for 19 years.

Jefferson and Elnora Calimlim, both doctors in Milwaukee, held the victim in a condition of servitude for nineteen years, requiring her to work long hours, seven days a week, as a domestic servant for the Calimlim family. The Calimlims threatened the victim with deportation and imprisonment if she disobeyed them. They also confined her inside their home, not allowing her to socialize with others, communicate freely with the outside world, or leave the house unsupervised. The victim was required to hide in her basement bedroom whenever non-family members were present in the house.

Human Trafficking: Modern Day Slavery, Part 1

Lauren Burgoyne, WSAW, May 22, 2006

[accessed 12 January 2011]

Nineteen trafficking cases were reported to The Greater Milwaukee Area Rescue and Restore Coalition over the past year. Incidents were reported in cities like Milwaukee, Spencer, Waukesha, Brookfield and in Jefferson and Fond Du Lac Counties.  Victims are forced to work with no pay or freedoms in restaurants, resorts, factories on farms and in suburban neighborhoods.

A new bid to halt toll of human trafficking

Claire Cooper and Christina Jewett, The Bee, May 20, 2006 – [story appeared on Page A16 of The Bee]

At one time this article had been archived and may possibly still be accessible [here]

[accessed 13 September 2011]

Florencia Molina's sewing teacher in Puebla, Mexico, unwittingly wrote Molina and herself one-way tickets into slavery.  Good jobs, food and housing awaited them in the United States, the teacher said. Molina had three days to decide.  Both women learned after arriving in Los Angeles that the jobs were sewing dresses for 17 hours a day with three 10-minute breaks for beans and rice.

New Process Benefits Victims of Human Trafficking Seeking College Aid [PDF]

U.S. Department of Education, May 9, 2006

[accessed 12 January 2011]

Victims of human trafficking who cooperate with law enforcement officials to prosecute traffickers will benefit from a new, streamlined process to apply for and receive federal financial aid for postsecondary education, announced today by U.S. Education Secretary Margaret Spellings.

Three charged in alleged human trafficking scheme

Wish TV 8 Indy, Indianapolis, 4 May 2006

[accessed 13 August 2014]

[accessed 2 March 2018]

Marion County prosecutor Carl Brizzi is charging three men with holding about 20 undocumented immigrants in a one bedroom Indianapolis apartment.  Brizzi says the three … threatened to kill the immigrants if they tried to leave.

The man says he escaped, but some of the coyotes confronted him at an Indianapolis bus station, where a Sheriff's deputy overheard them and the investigation began.

Human Trafficking Is Modern Day Slavery, Prostitution Is Involved

Cynthia Bercowetz, Author/Consumer Advocate, Bloomfield CT, May 03, 2006

[accessed 12 January 2011]

But trafficking also occurs in forms of labor exploitation, such as domestic servitude or restaurant work, sweatshop, factory work or migrant agricultural work.

Victims serve in wealthy residents' homes, migrants trapped in the fields trying to pay off a debt they never will be able to pay to captors who helped smuggle them into the country. Children are smuggled into the country and sex slavery.

Millionaire NY Couple Charged With Human Trafficking

[access date unavailable]

Two Nassau County residents are charged with using physical abuse, threats of physical abuse and physical restraint against two Indonesian females working as domestic servants at their residence.

Mission woman found guilty of human trafficking

Associated Press AP, Edinburg, May 6, 2006

[accessed 19 June 2013]

Prosecutors say Ellilian Ramos paid a smuggler $250 to bring the two women across the Rio Grande in November 2004. The women, cousins Maria de Jesus Batres and Floridalma Sales Flores, were forced to work at Ramos' home without pay, authorities said.

Batres and Sales say the couple promised to pay them $125 a week after smuggling costs were worked off. Instead, Ellilian Ramos didn't pay them and threatened to call immigration authorities if they tried to leave.

The women said they also worked for the Ramos' family members and at Papacito's Day Care, which is owned by Ellilian Ramos' sister. Both women escaped through a window on Jan. 11, 2005, with help from two women they met at the business.

Waipahu man convicted of forcing immigrants to work

Posted: Apr 28, 2006 -- Probable Source:

[accessed 13 August 2014]

A Waipahu man convicted of forcing immigrants to work under slave-like conditions will spend 26 years behind bars.   56-year-old Lueleni Maka smuggled young men from Tonga and forced them to work for his landscaping and construction business.   They worked and lived at his Nanakuli pig farm.   Victims testified that they worked long hours and only made $40 to $100 a week. Sometimes they were paid nothing.   If their work was unsatisfactory, they said Maka would beat them.

New push to combat human trafficking

Lolly Bowean, Chicago Tribune, April 23, 2006,0,4744942.story

[accessed 12 January 2011]

Victims of human trafficking blend in with the community as they toil as nannies, servants, laborers and sweatshop and construction workers, said a top Illinois official at the Saturday launch of an outreach campaign aimed at fighting the problem.

The campaign is intended to alert people to look for signs of abuse that indicate workers have been forced into servitude, said Carol Adams, director of the state Department of Human Services.

Key Witness missing in CO slavery case against Homaidan Al-Turki and Sarah Khonaizan

Seattle Post-Intelligencer, March 8th, 2006

[accessed 12 January 2011]

An Indonesian woman who was kept as a virtual slave and who was also a key witness against a Saudi Arabian couple, Homaidan Al-Turki and his wife, Sarah Khonaizan. A modern day slavery case where the victim was forced cook clean and was sexually abused.

Sex Trafficking of American Youth [PDF]

Stop Trafficking! - Anti-Human Trafficking Newsletter, Vol.4 No.3, March 2006

[accessed 14 August 2011]


Kris, age 15, was lured from a Brooklyn party by four people she met there, raped and nearly forced into a life of prostitution.  She is not a runaway.  She's a typical New York teen, a good student who comes from a strong, loving and supportive family ...

Ellen, a 16-year old runaway, was forced to work for a NJ prostitution ring that operated out of motels ...

Debbie, 15 years old, the middle child in a close-knit Air Force family from suburban Phoenix and a straight-A student, was kidnapped from the driveway of her home one evening.  Tied up, threatened and driven around Phoenix for hours, she was drugged and brought into a building where six men gang-raped her.   They advertised her on Craigslist in a section entitled "Teen Love".

Three Mexican Nationals Convicted of Sex Trafficking

United States Attorney, U.S. Department of Justice, Houston TX, February 6, 2006

At one time this article had been archived and may possibly still be accessible [here]

[accessed 13 September 2011]

At this re-arraignment hearing on Friday, February 3, Jose Luis Moreno Salazar admitted that in 2004 he, along with another, illegally smuggled a then 15 year old juvenile Mexican girl, M.R.G., into the United States, knowing she was a minor and compelled her to serve as a prostitute through the use of force, fraud and coercion for the financial benefit of the conspirators.   Jose Luis Moreno Salazar lured M.R.G. from her family by professing love and claiming she would live with him as his common law wife.  The evidence proved that once in Houston, Jose Luis Moreno Salazar housed M.R.G. and other women and girls in apartments leased by members of the organization and transported them to area bars for the purpose of prostitution.  Jose Luis and his co-conspirators provided instruction to the women and girls regarding how to service clients and required them to turn over their prostitution proceeds at the end of each day for the benefit of the conspirators.   Jose Luis and others threatened the women and girls to create a climate of fear to compel and maintain their service as prostitutes.  Jose Luis subjected M.R.G. to beatings for perceived infractions.  The beatings were committed with a belt, a wire hanger, or a cable.  For disobedience, M.R.G. was also threatened with a knife and beaten by other co-conspirators at the behest of Jose Luis.  M.R.G. was 17 years old when she was rescued by investigating agents in September 2005.

Sex rings prey on immigrant women

Franco Ordoñez, Charlotte Observer, January 29, 2006

[accessed 12 January 2011]

SUPPLY AND DEMAND - Human trafficking often begins with someone paying to be smuggled across the border. The situation changes when smugglers increase their prices or add fees the person is unable to pay. Smugglers then force them into work to pay off the debt. For women, the work is often prostitution.

In all, between 20,000 and 50,000 victims are trafficked yearly into the United States, including thousands in North Carolina. They are also forced to work in factories, migrant farms, construction and domestic work. Most victims in Charlotte come from Central and South America, but some others come from Asia and Eastern Europe.

Emancipation 2006 - Saving innocents from modern-day slavery (a work in progress)

Kathryn Jean Lopez, National Review NRO Editor, January 26, 2006

[accessed 13 August 2014]

[accessed 2 March 2018]

According to U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement, investigations into trafficking "increased by more than 400 percent in the first six months of fiscal year 2005, compared to the total number of cases in fiscal year 2004." Although keeping true numbers on these elusive crimes is next to impossible, according to the U.S. Department of Justice, between 14,500 and 17,500 people are being traded within the United States.

Mexican national pleads guilty to bringing sex slaves to Houston-area bars

Associated Press AP, Houston, January 17, 2006

At one time this article had been archived and may possibly still be accessible [here]

[accessed 13 September 2011]

Salvador Fernando Molina Garcia, 37, an illegal immigrant, has pleaded guilty to smuggling girls and young women from Mexico into Houston and forcing them to work as prostitutes in local bars, according to federal officials.

The single count superseding indictment re-alleges that Gerardo Salazar, 40, is the leader of a group of men who smuggled minor girls and young women from Mexico into the United States. Using deception, threats of harm, physical force and psychological coercion, Salazar compelled their service for prostitution in Houston area bars.

Slavery Slips Through Cracks in U.S. Policy

Michelle Chen, 05 July 2005 -- Source:

Click [here] to access the article.  Its URL is not displayed because of its length

[accessed 12 January 2011]

Bernstein, whose group handles a constant flow of slavery cases, listed some typical scenarios:

An offer to earn good wages and study lures a teenage girl abroad, where she is forced to work eighteen hours a day as a housekeeper

Aided by a smuggler, a young man’s passage across the US-Mexico border ends with a crushing debt, to be repaid through captive manual labor.

More Slave-Holding Immigrants in the West

Daniel Pipes, Lion's Den, December 16, 2005

[accessed 12 January 2011]

Abdelnasser Eid Youssef Ibrahim, 45, and his former wife Amal Ahmed Ewis-abd Motelib, 43: The Egyptian immigrants, living in Irvine, California, pleaded guilty today to four felonies in a child slave case. They admitted bringing a 10-year-old Egyptian girl in 2000 to the United States and making her work as a servant for up to 16 hours a day, seven days a week, to their family of seven during August 2000-April 2002.

Salvadoran Nationals in the U.S. Arrested for Sex Trafficking Scheme

U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement ICE, Houston TX, 19 December 2005

[accessed 12 January 2011]

[accessed 2 March 2018]

According to the complaint, one young woman earned about $500 to $600 a week selling drinks to male customers. But after paying debts that included alien smuggling fees, food, housing, clothing and other miscellaneous items, she received approximately $50 each week. In addition to the almost insurmountable debt, the complaint alleges that the defendants used threats of violence against the women and their families to control them and keep them working. The complaint alleges that the defendants compelled the woman and girls to submit to the sexual demands of the defendants, their close associates and bar patrons.

U.S. crackdown on child prostitution hits Michigan

David Ashenfelter, Detroit Free Press, December 17, 2005

At one time this article had been archived and may possibly still be accessible [here]

[accessed 13 September 2011]

Two Toledo girls -- one 14 years old, the other 15 -- were held against their will and forced to perform sex for pay at hotels in Ohio and a truck stop in Michigan, according to a federal grand jury indictment unsealed Friday in Detroit.

Los Angeles Woman Pleads Guilty To Human Trafficking Charge For Bringing Niece To U.S. To Work As Prostitute

U.S. Department of Justice, Los Angeles CA, December 6, 2005 – Press Release 05-164

[accessed 3 May 2012]

[accessed 2 March 2018]

According to a plea agreement filed today, in January 2003, Okhotina paid for a ticket for her 18-year-old niece to fly from Russia to Los Angeles. When the teenager arrived in Los Angeles, she lived with Okhotina at her apartment. Soon after, Okhotina took possession of her niece’s passport and told her that she would have to work as a prostitute.

Okhotina coerced her niece to work as a prostitute by telling her that she would be arrested if she went to the police because she was here in the United States illegally. Okhotina also told the niece that if she left the apartment, or if Okhotina made her leave the apartment, she would have no place to stay and would be on the street.

As a result of this coercion, the teenager engaged in prostitution in California and Las Vegas, Nevada. Okhotina took the money that her niece received for prostituting herself.

Sex slavery is big business

Nancy Holland, KHOU-TV – Channel 11 News - Houston TX, 16 November 2005

[accessed 12 January 2011]

Earlier this week, eight people were charged with smuggling 100 girls from Central America into Houston and forcing them into prostitution.  The victims are brought here from Southeast Asia, Latin America, the former Soviet Union and the continent of Africa.

Police target human trafficking

Kevin Corcoran, Indianapolis Star, 28 November 2005

-- Source:

Click [here] to access the article.  Its URL is not displayed because of its length

[accessed 12 January 2011]

In Indiana, at least 2 inquiries are under way into rings that push people into prostitution, slavery.  Marlene Harpi arrived in Indianapolis from New York in June 2001, believing she would be starting a $500-a-week baby-sitting job.  The Honduran woman, then 34, was told instead she would be working as a prostitute in a duplex in the 3000 block of West 16th Street. Her captors warned her that she would "disappear" if she tried to flee.

Enslaved in America: Sex Trafficking in the United States

Tina Frundt, Women's Funding Network, Nov 28 2005

[accessed 12 January 2011]

I was 14 years old when I was forced into prostitution. Like many teens at that age, finding my own identity and defying my parents were top on my list. So when a man came into my life and showered me with attention and listened to me when I complained about my parents, I did not think twice that he was ten years my senior. After all, he said I was mature for my age and told me I understood him better than anyone his own age.




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