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What is Human Trafficking?

Human trafficking is a form of modern-day slavery and it’s happening right here in Arizona. According to the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime, each year, “men, women and children fall into the hands of traffickers, in their own countries and abroad.” According to the Polaris Project, human trafficking is a “multi-billion-dollar criminal industry that denies freedom to 20.9 people around the world.” With human trafficking, victims are held against their will and made to engage in forced labor or the illegal sex trade with no compensation except for sustenance. Traffickers often use drugs, physical abuse, threats, and confinement to control their victims.

Facts on human trafficking reported by the Polaris Project:

  • 68% of victims are trapped into forced labor.
  • 26% of the victims are children.
  • 55% of the victims are girls and women.
  • An estimated 1 out of 6 runaways in 2016 reported to the National Center for Exploited Children were likely victims of sex trafficking.
  • In the last eight years, 31,600 cases of human trafficking have been reported to the National Human Trafficking Hotline.

About Sex Trafficking

Sex trafficking is going on in Arizona, throughout the United States and the world. Sex traffickers use lies, promises of love and romance, offers of food and shelter, offers of a luxurious lifestyle, threats and violence to compel children and adults into engaging in the illegal sex trade. Under federal law, any minor who is under 18 and induced into the sex trade is a victim of sex trafficking.

According to Polaris, “Many victims become romantically involved with someone who then forces or manipulates them into prostitution.” Some victims are forced to sell sex by their own parents or other family members. For example, a mother can invite men into her home to have sex with her elementary or high school-aged daughter. Even though the child was not moved, it’s still considered sex trafficking. While almost anyone can be a target of sex trafficking, the most vulnerable include runaways, homeless youth, and unsupervised children.

To learn more about sex trafficking in Arizona, click here. You can also check out the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s page on human trafficking and involuntary servitude.

Human trafficking is a serious crime in Arizona. If you’re facing state or federal charges for this offense, contact our firm at once for a legal defense.