Human Traffic Watch

Posts Tagged ‘Minnesota’

Sex trafficking: migration to Internet brings new victims, customers

In Awareness, Child Sex Trafficking, Forced Prostitution, Human Trafficking, Sex Trafficking on June 2, 2012 at 4:16 pm

Zaiye Dehkee

Officers arrived and arrested the man who was trying to drive away. Once he was in custody, the victim started to talk about her life as a prostitute and how her pimp used the Internet to seek clients.

“The young 16-year-old girl began to tell the deputy …that it wasn’t really a boyfriend-girlfriend relationship and that it involved a several-month period of prostitution and violence,” Anoka County Sheriff’s detective Tom Strusinski said.

According to the U.S. Justice Department, the Twin Cities metro area is the 15th highest sex trafficking center in the country.

Source: Minnesota Public Radio

Tennessee: Split Verdict in Sex Trafficking Case

In Child Sex Trafficking, Forced Prostitution, Human Trafficking, Prostitution, Sex Trafficking on May 5, 2012 at 7:17 pm

A federal jury in Tennessee delivered a split verdict on Friday against nine people, mostly Somali men, who were accused of operating a sex trafficking ring in three states. Three men were convicted, and six were acquitted. The defendants are among 30 who were indicted in the case, which spans from Minnesota to Ohio and Tennessee. The jury of six men and six women deliberated over five days this week before returning the verdict. Van Vincent, an assistant United States attorney, said the government would not stop prosecuting these cases. A Somali witness identified only as Jane Doe No. 2 testified that she was used as a prostitute by gang members starting at the age of 12. She cried in court as she described being taken to several apartments around suburban Minneapolis to have sex with Somali men for money, sometimes as little as $40. Idris Ibrahim Fahra, Andrew Kayachith and Yassin Abdirahman Yusuf were found guilty of conspiracy to commit sex trafficking of children by force, fraud or coercion.

Source: New York Times

Minnesota: A human trafficking battleground

In Child Sex Trafficking, Forced Prostitution, Human Trafficking, Prostitution, Sex Trafficking on February 17, 2012 at 9:59 am

During rush hour in the Twin Cities, and as most people end their work day, the prostitutes of south Minneapolis are starting theirs.

“You have to go out when the girls are out and the girls are out when the johns are out,” says Joy Friedman with Breaking Free, a Twin Cities victim advocacy organization. “It’s dinner time and they have a quickie before they go home so to speak.”

Joy is part of the Breaking Free outreach team, which tries to stay connected to prostitutes and get them help.

“They know my car. That’s Miss Joy’s green machine,” says Joy.

And Joy knows this place well – the streets, the customers, the game.

“I actually used to walk these streets,” says Joy.

(Trisha Volpe for KARE 11)

Human Traffickers Still Use the So-Called ‘Minnesota Pipeline’

In Child Trafficking, Forced Labor, Forced Prostitution, Human Trafficking, Sex Trafficking on February 9, 2012 at 9:27 am

A report being delivered to Minnesota lawmakers this week is expected to open their eyes to an issue often in the shadows – human trafficking. Brian Rusche, executive director of theJoint Religious Legislative Coalition(JRLC), says some estimates put the number of women and girls involved in prostitution in the state at 10,000.

“The fact is that Minnesota has a human trafficking problem out of proportion to our population; more than you would expect. And so, the first thing we need to do, I think, is just shake us up a little and say, ‘This is happening in our backyard and we have to address a growing problem.'”

Rusche says the perpetrators often target those children who are vulnerable; the typical age of a child forced into trafficking is between 11 and 14.

“If you’re a young person and you’re homeless, and somebody is going to get you out of the cold and give you a warm place to live, that has a certain amount of attraction – and just may be enough to keep you in a really unhealthy relationship.”

(John Michaelson, Public News Service)

A new ally joins fight to end teen sex trade

In Child Sex Trafficking, Forced Prostitution, Human Trafficking, Sex Trafficking on January 29, 2012 at 10:58 am

Terry Williams stood in front of guests at a swank Wayzata home on a recent evening, carrying a message that wasn’t exactly cocktail party fare. Surrounded by lovely furniture and a glowing fireplace, she showed them a gritty film titled “Minnesota Girls Are Not for Sale.”

For the next 45 minutes, a dozen guests sipping wine learned about a new $4 million, five-year campaign to halt sex trafficking of teenage girls…

For the first time, a state foundation has opened its vaults to create a dedicated funding stream for programs against sex trafficking. For the first time, a foundation has spearheaded a public education campaign on trafficking, handed out grants to law enforcement and prosecutors, and collaborated with state players to build a safety net for the victims.

Last week the foundation announced its first grants in Minnesota, which is becoming a national model for combating the teen sex trade.

Mpls. Woman Charged With Sex Trafficking A Minor

In Human Trafficking on January 25, 2012 at 10:01 am

According Latham’s indictment, Latham recruited, harbored and transported the minor, who she forced to engage in a commercial sex act. Latham allegedly received money from the minor’s participation, and paid for advertisements on an Internet website.The Twin Cities metro area is one of the 15 largest human trafficking centers in the nation, according to the U.S Department of Justice. In the U.S., an estimated 14,500 to 17,500 people are trafficked.

(CBS Minnesota)
Mpls. Woman Charged With Sex Trafficking A Minor

New trial ordered for Burnsville man convicted of pimping teen

In Human Trafficking on January 24, 2012 at 4:14 pm

A Burnsville man spending 28 years in federal prison after being convicted of pimping a teenage girl in the Twin Cities has been granted a new trial due to flawed jury instructions, the U.S. Court of Appeals ordered Friday.Arthur Chappell, 39, was convicted last year of sex trafficking of a minor for allegedly recruiting a 17-year-old girl to perform sex acts for money for about two months in 2007. Police learned he was advertising sexual services of girls and women on websites, according to the charges. Court records show the girl, from Richfield, said Chappell had threatened and sexually assaulted her.

(DAVID CHANEN for Star Tribune)
New trial ordered for Burnsville man convicted of pimping teen

Man Gets 11 Years For Sex Trafficking A Minor in Minnesota

In Human Trafficking on January 16, 2012 at 1:56 pm

A 52-year-old Woodbury man has been sentenced to 11 years in prison for bringing a 15-year-old girl across state lines with the intention of having her engage in prostitution.According to the U.S. Department of Justice, Stevon Warren was convicted of one count of trafficking a minor and one count of interstate transportation to engage in prostitution.Warren’s plan was discovered by authorities after he advertised on Craigslist, tipping off the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the Minneapolis Police Department.The Justice Department says the Twin Cities ranks among the top 15 largest areas in the nation for human trafficking.

(CBS Minnesota)
Man Gets 11 Years For Sex Trafficking A Minor in Minnesota

New ally in war on trafficking in Minnesota

In Human Trafficking on January 8, 2012 at 8:34 pm

These have been actual ads on local classified sites: “Sexy Czech Beauty,” “Drop Dead Gorgeous Puerto Rican Playmate,” “Unforgettable Oriental Relaxing Massage.”They serve as a gritty reminder that Minnesota is a center for human trafficking — either for sex or forced labor. The FBI says an average of 100 girls under the age of 18 are trafficked in Minnesota every month.But the state also is a growing hub for organizations dedicated to combatting this modern-day slavery. One of the newest players with a local connection is the Institute for Trafficked, Exploited & Missing Persons (ITEMP), started in Bismarck, N.D., a decade ago but recently headquartered in Minnetonka.

(JAMES WALSH via Star Tribune)
New ally in war on trafficking in Minnesota

The 2010 incident is one of a growing number of cases that police in the east metro suburb have dealt with over the past two years, said Cmdr. Jay Alberio of the Woodbury Police Department. And it played a role in the Woodbury City Council’s decision on Wednesday to adopt an ordinance that will require massage therapy businesses and massage therapists to be licensed. “From a public safety perspective, it’s a good ordinance,” Alberio said. “We need an additional resource tool to put a stop to illegal business moving into Woodbury.” In passing the measure 3-0 with one council member abstaining, Woodbury joins the neighboring communities of Lake Elmo, Oakdale and Cottage Grove, as well as cities such as Apple Valley, Bloomington, Minnetonka, Minneapolis, St. Paul, Wayzata, Eagan, Plymouth and Roseville that have similar ordinances. The aim is to cut down on prostitution by helping citizens distinguish legitimate therapy businesses from those offering illicit services, and to protect the reputation of legitimate massage therapists, said city clerk Kim Blaeser.
(Tim Harlow for Star Tribune)

In Human Trafficking on November 15, 2011 at 2:34 pm

Massage therapy or sex for sale? Ordinance a touchy topic in Woodbury, Minnesota

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