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Sex Trafficking 101: An Introductory Lesson

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According to the FBI, sex trafficking is the most common form of modern day slavery. Sex trafficking occurs whenever a victim is taken from her home and then forced to perform sex acts for pay. This crime doesn’t just happen in third world countries, as thousands are estimated to be “sex slaves” right here in the United States as well.

Importing Prostitutes is a Major Industry

Sex trafficking is the third-largest criminal “industry”, and is the fastest-growing one worldwide. The Yoga Freedom Project estimates that sex trafficking brings in more than $32 billion in illicit funds each year, and affects between 12-15 million people. The majority of these victims are female; however, males may also be enslaved as well.

Sex Trafficking Victim Statistics

The Yoga Freedom Project also reports that up to one million people are smuggled across U.S. borders each year for the purpose of sex trafficking. Of those, a good number are child victims, with the average age of a sex slave being between 12 and 14 years old. As many as 6 million women and children are thought to be victims at any given time.

How Human Trafficking Victims Are Chosen

Victims may enter the trade in a number of ways, including:

  • Kidnapping
  • Being sold into the trade by family members
  • False marriage proposals
  • Job offers in a foreign country

Many times, victims are chosen because of their familial or economic status. Within the U.S., the majority of underage victims are either runaways or children who have been abandoned by their families. In other countries, sex slaves may be chosen because they are poor, have little education, and live in impoverished areas.

Sophisticated Network

Sex traffickers are part of a sophisticated network that involves a “recruiter” and a commercial slave handler. As a result, those who extract sex slaves already have a market for their victim before even doing so. Once in control of a handler, the victim is kept closely guarded, and may live in a perpetual state of fear in order to keep her under control. Some of the methods used to control a sex slave are:

  • Denying food, water, or medical attention
  • Controlling money
  • Severely limiting one’s communications with others
  • Keeping official documents such as passports and I.D. cards away from the victim

National Focus

The increase in sex trafficking has drawn national attention recently, with cities that host major sporting events such as the Super Bowl setting up special task forces to deal with this issue. This crime continues to threaten the freedom of millions of people worldwide, which means that law enforcement must be ever vigilant in order to prosecute those responsible.

Sex Trafficking Defense

Because sex trafficking is such an emotionally charged issue, it is easy for somebody to become accused of committing this crime and having their reputation severely injured. This can lead to both personal and professional troubles. If you have been accused of participating in human trafficking, then it is most advisable for you to seek professional help from an experienced criminal defense attorney. Get a hold of Brett A. Podolsky today by calling 713.227.0087 and get a free legal consultation session.

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