March 23, 2012
Student kept in sex slave hell in Birmingham
When police raided the Birmingham house, they found Ana in a bedroom.
At first, in broken English, the clearly terrified 24-year-old assured officers she was OK.
But then, as police gently tried to find out who she was and where was she from, Ana broke down.
What she later told detectives was a harrowing story of people trafficking that had seen her lured from her Romanian homeland to Britain with the promise of a respectable job.
For Ana, a financial management student, the offer seemed like a dream opportunity.
But after arriving in Birmingham she was told the job had fallen through and within 24 hours the terrified student, a virgin, had been forced to work in a brothel in Handsworth.
For the next two months she was made to sleep with between 30 and 35 men from 10am until 2am every day, seven days a week, earning her traffickers around £750 a day.
She was fed just one meal ... [more]
March 29, 2012
CASE Act Campaign Submits 865,000 Signatures to Qualify for November 2012 Ballot
The Californians Against Sexual Exploitation (CASE) Act campaign today announced the submission of more than 865,000 signatures to qualify for the November 2012 ballot. The CASE Act is a ballot initiative that will fight back against human trafficking and the sexual exploitation of women and children in the state.
The number of signatures submitted by the campaign far exceeds the approximately 500,000 needed to qualify the measure for the ballot.
In California, many vulnerable women and young girls are held against their will and forced to sell their bodies. The victims are often girls as young as 12 who are sexually exploited for the financial gain of human traffickers. They are afraid for their lives and abused – sexually, physically, and mentally.
Human trafficking is said to be one of the fastest growing criminal enterprises in the world – and it is tak... [more]
March 24, 2012
Spanish police arrest 22 gang members that tattooed bar codes onto prostitutes' wrists
MADRID — Spanish police arrested 22 suspected pimps who allegedly used violence to force women into prostitution and tattooed them with bar codes as a sign of ownership, officials said Saturday.
Police are calling the gang the “bar code pimps.” Officers freed one 19-year-old woman who had been beaten, held against her will and tattooed with a bar code and an amount of money — €2,000 ($2,650) — which investigators believe was the debt the gang wished to extort before releasing her.
The woman had also been whipped, chained to a radiator and had her hair and eyebrows shaved off, according to an Interior Ministry statement.
All those arrested were of Romanian nationality and had forced the women to hand over part of their earnings, the statement said.
The women were tattooed on their wrists if they tried to escape, the statement said. Police also s... [more]
March 26, 2012
Israel charged with extorting African migrants in trafficking ring
JERUSALEM — An Israeli man has been charged with participation in a human trafficking ring that captured and tortured African migrants in Egypt's neighboring Sinai desert, according to an indictment released Sunday.
The indictment said the accused — a Bedouin from the Negev desert in southern Israel — extorted tens of thousands of dollars from Eritrean and Sudanese migrants in Israel whose relatives were being held by smugglers in Sinai.
The charge sheet said that over the past nine months, the suspect collected ransoms of up to $40,000 each for dozens of captives held by nomadic Bedouin tribesmen in the Sinai.
The Bedouin were supposed to smuggle them over the border into Israel. According to the indictment, the traffickers threatened to kill the captives or remove their kidneys for sale if their relatives in Israel didn't pay up.
Some 50,000 Africans have entere... [more]
The Register Guard
March 15, 2012
Three sentenced for pimping 2 girls
PORTLAND — A 29-year-old Springfield man was sentenced Wednesday to nearly 16 years in federal prison for the sex trafficking of two girls in the Eugene-Springfield area in early 2009.
A 2010 federal grand jury indicted Stanley Mack “Bug” Spriggs Jr. and two 29-year-old female accomplices in connection with an operation in which they used the Internet to advertise the girls, then 16 and 17, for prostitution.
Spriggs' sister, Hollie Robin Spriggs, was sentenced to eight years in prison for her role in the scheme, which included taking provocative photos used to market the 17-year-old girl and enjoying food, drugs and lodging purchased with proceeds from the teen's sex acts.
Spriggs' former girlfriend, Sharlise Michelle Duckworth, received a sentence of five years of probation and 150 hours of community service after pleading guilty to one count of concealing the crime of sex trafficking of a min... [more]
U.S. Department of State
March 14, 2012
Secretary Clinton To Chair President's Human Trafficking Task Force Meeting
Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton will chair the annual meeting of the President's Interagency Task Force to Monitor and Combat Trafficking in Persons at 10:15 a.m. on Thursday, March 15 at the White House. Those attending include Attorney General Eric H. Holder, Jr., Secretary of Labor Hilda L. Solis, Secretary of Health and Human Services Kathleen Sebelius, Secretary of Homeland Security Janet Napolitano, Director of National Intelligence LtGen James R. Clapper, Jr., USAF (Ret.). U.S. Agency for International Development Administrator Rajiv Shah, Deputy Secretary of Defense Ashton Carter, Deputy National Security Advisor Denis McDonough, and Senior Advisor to the President Valerie Jarrett. Representatives from the Departments of Transportation and Education, the Domestic Policy Council, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, the Federal Burea... [more]
Asia One News
March 8, 2012
Vietnam jails 29 for sex trafficking ring
HANOI - A Vietnamese court has jailed 29 people linked to a human trafficking ring that sent teenage sex slaves to China, a court official said Thursday after a week-long trial in Hanoi.
Gang ringleader Vu Van Cong, 28, was sentenced to 26 years in prison by the Hanoi People's Court in a verdict delivered on Wednesday, the official told AFP on condition of anonymity.
The 28 others were given sentences ranging from 22 years in prison to a 10-month suspended sentence handed to a relative of a gang member for failing to report them to the authorities.
Police began investigating the gang after one member was arrested in June 2010 while trying to force a 13-year-old girl to board a train heading for the Vietnamese border province of Lao Cai, the local website VNExpress reported.
The victim was going to be forced to work as a prostitute in Lao Cai before being smuggled into China to work in the se... [more]
Atlanta Journal Constitution
March 7, 2012
Drag performer gets prison in human trafficking case
An Atlanta drag show personality pleaded guilty Wednesday in a human trafficking case out of Douglas County and was sentenced to serve at least 14 years in prison.
Christopher Thomas Lynch, better known to local audiences as Pasha Nicole, broke down as he entered his guilty plea.
"I'm just so sorry," he said, sobbing, at the Douglas County Superior Court hearing covered by Channel 2 Action News. "I was wrong, so wrong."
Lynch pleaded guilty to two counts of sexual exploitation of a child, one count of pimping a victim under the age of 18 and one count of pandering by compulsion, according to Andrew Agan, spokesman for the Douglas County District Attorney's Office.
Judge David Emerson sentenced Lynch to 30 years, with 14 years of that sentence to be served in prison.
“Lynch will also be required to render truthful testimony against any other defendants in this cas... [more]
Kansas City Infozine
March 6, 2012
Missouri Woman Sentenced for Coerced Sex Trafficking of a Child
A Kansas City, Missouri woman was sentenced in federal court for her role in a sex trafficking conspiracy in which a child victim was sold into prostitution.
Kansas City, MO - infoZine - Beth Phillips, United States Attorney for the Western District of Missouri, announced that Brandy Key, 40, of Columbia, was sentenced by U.S. District Judge Gary A. Fenner to 10 years in federal prison without parole.
In October 2011, both Key and co-defendant Eric Gathings, also known as "Pulu," 37, of Columbia, pleaded guilty.
Gathings admitted that in 2009 he recruited a homeless minor to engage in prostitution for his financial benefit. Gathings provided housing for the child victim, but took her earnings after requiring that she sell herself for sex.
After discharging a sawed-off shotgun in his front yard, Gathings was incarcerated in state custody. During this time of incar... [more]
March 6, 2012
Somali sex-slave ring faces trial in Tennessee
Twenty three accused defendants will face a Federal judge and jury in Tennessee next month on charges of slaving girls as young as 12-years-old.
A Somali immigrant gang kidnapped children, then trafficked them into the horrific world of sexual slavery in the very heartland of America -- Minnesota, Tennessee and Ohio.
Real Clear Politics reports that in the indictments handed down, "the Somali gangsters who ran these sex trafficking rings used them to finance their lifestyle -- and to provide for their own sexual satisfactions as well."
The article went on to state the indictment also read:
"One defendant, Haji Osman Salad, nicknamed "Hollywood," later made Jane Doe Two 'his girl.' He would pick her up from public school, take her to an apartment for sex, and then order her to have sex with other men."
Also in the Federal indictment:
"In one two-day period in April 2009, the teenage... [more]
Feet in 2 Worlds
March 5, 2012
Diplomat's Servant Exposes Modern Day Slavery in the U.S.
On February 22, New York Magistrate Judge Frank Maas recommended that Indian national Shanti Gurung be awarded nearly $1.5 million by her former employer, Neena Malhotra, a diplomat in the Indian Mission to the United Nations for enslaving Gurung.
Maas wrote that Malhotra and her husband compelled Gurung to “work without pay by seizing her passport and visa, restricting her ability to leave their apartment, and constantly warning her that if she traveled on her own without their permission, she would be arrested, beaten, raped and sent back to India as ‘cargo.'”
Adhikaar, an advocacy group for the Nepalese community that successfully lobbied for the New York State Domestic Workers Bill of Rights, reports that the diplomat and her husband brought Gurung to New York in 2006 with the promise of paying her $100 a month to do light cooking and a few chores. The 17 year old ended up w... [more]
Central Coast News
March 1, 2012
Girl, 17, Testifies Against Her Pimp
SALINAS - A 17-year-old girl who said she was brought to the Central Coast and sold for sex testified in court today against her pimp.
The minor testified against Aaliyah Person, also known as Lisa Banner, during Person's preliminary hearing.
Person is facing numerous charges, including pandering, human trafficking, kidnapping for extortion, two counts of grand theft, possession of stolen property, and transportation of marijuana.
The 17-year-old Livermore girl took the stand and said she willingly came to the central coast to work for Person and a pimp named "Tube" from Oakland as a prostitute.
All was fine, until the minor said she learned a debt that Person was supposed to be paying to another pimp, on her behalf, wasn't being paid.
That's when the minor said she wanted out.
She said Person wouldn't let her and she was held hostage.
"It's not just the obvious violence. It's th... [more]
Viet Nam News
March 2, 2012
Human trafficking trial opens
HA NOI – Ha Noi People's Court yesterday began the first trial in a case involving the biggest human trafficking ring ever uncovered in the country.
In total, 29 defendants are standing trial, and ringleader Tran Hoang Anh, 42, from Hai Phong, is well known as a leading underworld figure. They are being charged with human trafficking, prostitution rackets and harboring criminals.
The ring had built a network that crossed Ha Noi and Hai Phong, and the northern border provinces of Lao Cai and Yen Bai, from where they sold young girls to partners in China.
The ring was busted in June 2010 when Hoang Anh's accomplice, Nguyen Thi Thuy, was attempting to transport 19-year-old Pham Thi Ngan from Ha Noi Railway Station to Lao Cai before heading to China. While he was waiting to buy tickets, Ngan shouted for help and Thuy was immediately arrested. Other members of the ring were arrested later.
It's reported the d... [more]
March 1, 2012
Charges laid over illegal sale of human kidneys in China
A Beijing court has prosecuted more than a dozen people for organizing the illegal sale of 51 human kidneys worth about 10 million yuan (US$1.6 million) in one of China's biggest organ trafficking cases.
The ring, headed by Zheng Wei, allegedly helped scores of customers find organs by paying mostly young and poor men approximately 25,000 yuan each. Their kidneys were then sold for about 200,000 yuan, according to the state-controlled People's Daily.
The Beijing Haidian District People's Procuratorate prosecuted Zheng and 15 others involved in the scam, including some doctors from state-run hospitals.
According to reports, an operation room from a township hospital in Jiangsu Province was set up between March and June of 2010, where more than 20 kidneys were removed from living "sellers" and sent to Beijing for patients suffering from kidney disease.
Zheng then purportedly moved the ope... [more]
Manchester Evening News
March 1, 2012
Eccles ‘sex slave' woman pleaded with police to go home to Pakistan, court hears
A woman who claims she was locked in a cellar and treated as a virtual domestic slave by a couple in their home has told a court how she tearfully pleaded with police to return to Pakistan after she was discovered.
It is alleged that the woman, who is deaf and cannot speak, was trafficked from Pakistan into Britain at the age of between 10 and 12 in 2000.
A jury at Manchester's Minshull Street Crown Court has heard that she was subjected to years of abuse. She was made to clean, cook, sew and wash cars without pay, the jury has heard. It is also alleged she was raped, sexually abused, stabbed and used to access benefit payments.
The woman, who cannot be named for legal reasons, was discovered at the home of Ilyas Ashar and his wife Tallat in Cromwell Road, Eccles, Salford, in June 2009.
The couple are on trial and deny all charges.
Ilyas A... [more]
February 29, 2012
Brighton man Thomas Cramer, charged with sex trafficking, appears in federal court.
Rochester, N.Y. — Brighton man Thomas Cramer, charged with trafficking minors in the sex trade, appeared in court yesterday.
Prosecutors describe his criminal past as “stunning.” Yesterday, U.S. Justice Department officials called Cramer a dangerous man as they argued to keep him locked up. Cramer was charged last week with promoting and profiting from the commercial sex trade involving teenage girls.
Cramer was in court for a hearing where a judge is trying to determine if he should be detained or granted some type of release from custody while he awaits trial. The prosecutor argues that, given the seriousness of the charges and his criminal past, Cramer is a danger to the community.
“His criminal history is, frankly, stunning,” said Assistant U.S. Attorney John Rogowski. “He's a 40-year-old male who began his criminal career a... [more]