What is a Sex Trafficking Probe?
A sex trafficking probe is an investigation into whether a person has crossed state or international borders to have sex with an underage girl. A sex trafficking probe can be related to several different crimes, including child prostitution, sex trafficking, illegal possession of a firearm and obstruction of justice.
The Department of Justice is reportedly winding up its two-year probe into Florida Republican Rep. Matt Gaetz after prosecutors decided not to charge him. Career federal prosecutors informed witnesses of the decision Wednesday, CNN’s Paula Reid reports.
Sex trafficking is the illegal sale or transfer of sex.
Sex trafficking is the illegal sale or transfer of sex, including sexual acts and services. It is a crime of human trafficking and can be a serious violation that leads to long-term physical and psychological trauma, sexual exploitation, disease (HIV/AIDS), addiction, malnutrition, social ostracism, and other harms.
Anyone can be a victim of sex trafficking. Children, women, LGBTQ people, and men are all at risk. Individuals who have been abused, neglected, abandoned, or who have experienced homelessness are at higher risk of becoming victims.
Victims of sex trafficking vary, but all are at risk of long-term health and mental health issues related to their situation. They may have to live in dangerous circumstances, and they can suffer from physical and psychological injury, depression, substance abuse, HIV/AIDS, gang-related violence, and other traumatic experiences that can leave them with a sense of worthlessness, shame, or guilt.
Many victims of sex trafficking become addicted to the drugs that are used to control them. These drugs include heroin, ecstasy, and morphine. These drugs can cause severe physical and psychological side effects, such as hallucinations, paranoia, rage, anxiety, and depression.
In the United States, any child under 18 who is induced to engage in commercial sex as a result of force, fraud, or coercion is legally considered a victim of sex trafficking. This includes those who are recruited or sold by armed groups, as well as those who are exploited in the workplace or on the street.
The perpetrators of sex trafficking are varied and can include family members, pimps, foreign nationals, business owners, labor brokers, gang members, diplomats, farm, factory, or company owners, and other strangers. They can also be criminals or fugitives.
Some traffickers also operate sex rings, or networks of people who share sexually exploited people. They often post ads on a variety of Internet sites, and a sex buyer will contact them to arrange a meeting.
These sex rings are also known as trafficking networks and are an increasingly common form of sexual exploitation for people from vulnerable populations. These victims may be migrant workers, domestic workers, nannies, housewives, or anyone who has been trafficked to another country.
It can be a crime in any state.
In many states, sex trafficking is an actual crime. The state law may provide a range of penalties, including imprisonment for 10 to 25 years and/or fines. The state also may allow the court to impose a standing criminal protective order against anyone convicted of trafficking when the victim is under 18 and the offense is charged as domestic minor sex trafficking (DMST) [8, 9].
In Alabama, for example, human trafficking can be defined as the recruitment of any person for labor or sexual servitude with a purpose to deprive them of their liberty, freedom, privacy, or economic and social well-being. It can also involve enticing, inducing, harboring, transporting, holding, restraining, providing, maintaining, subjecting, or obtaining any person for labor or sexual servitude.
A person can also be charged with human trafficking for debt bondage if they manipulate their victim’s debt to compel them into working or engaging in commercial sex. This includes forcing an individual to owe debts to a business, their family members, or other people they are bonded with in a trafficking scheme.
According to the United Nations Trafficking in Persons Protocol, a person is considered a victim of trafficking if he or she is forced, lured, or coerced into working or engaging in sex for payment. It also requires that a victim be subjected to an act of violence, or that he or she is in danger of serious bodily injury.
The United States has a federal definition of trafficking, which is detailed in the U.S. Code section 2261. The federal statute makes trafficking a crime when it is committed by a foreign national or a person living in the United States for the purpose of engaging in any of the activities described in the section. The federal statute also makes it a predicate crime for a person to be arrested under the Corrupt Organizations Racketeering Act, which authorizes police to wiretap without a warrant in human trafficking investigations.
While the federal statute is clear on its definition, each state has its own version of the law and a wide range of penalties for those who commit the crime. Some states, like New York and Utah, elevate the crime to a first degree felony. Others, like Connecticut, raise it to a class A felony.
It can be a crime in any country.
Often, people assume that human trafficking is only a crime in countries with restrictive laws, but it can be a serious issue anywhere in the world. Many victims are not legally allowed to work in their own countries and are recruited by traffickers who promise them better life opportunities.
In some cases, traffickers recruit people in their home country and then ship them overseas for sex or labor work. They may even seize the victims’ passports to force them to move to another country for sex work.
Women are the largest group of victims of human trafficking. They represent 99 percent of all sex trafficking victims and 58 percent of all commercial sex exploitation victims.
They are also more vulnerable to sexual exploitation by traffickers due to social stigma and discrimination, gender-based violence, high rates of domestic violence and poverty. They are especially susceptible to human trafficking if they live in a region with low wages or lack the education to pursue better employment.
In addition to sex trafficking, there are other forms of human trafficking, including child exploitation and forced labor. These can include state-imposed labor or sex slavery by armed groups.
The UN Trafficking in Persons Protocol defines human trafficking as the recruitment, transportation, transfer, harbouring or receipt of persons by means of threats, coercion, physical force or other forms of violence against their will for the purpose of exploitation.
This includes sexual exploitation, forced labor, domestic servitude and early marriage, which is considered a type of child trafficking. These crimes affect more than fifteen million people worldwide and are not always reported to authorities.
A major part of a human trafficking investigation is to find out where the traffickers are operating. This information can be used to inform the public about where they are based and how to help.
HSI has worked in many locations to support the development of local human trafficking initiatives, which focus on prevention and training. These initiatives include community education and awareness, victim service providers and culturally relevant programs to provide food, clothing, medical care, legal assistance and more depending on the needs of the victims.
It can be a crime in any combination.
Sex trafficking is the sale or transfer of sex in a variety of settings. It can take place in a hotel, massage parlor, restaurant, strip club, escort service or street prostitution, among other places.
Sex trafficking can also be the illegal use of debts to entice and coerce people into commercial or professional sex. It can involve anything from a few dollars to millions of dollars.
The crime is a multi-pronged effort, with all three elements necessary for the crime to be considered a success: the purpose, the tactics and the outcome. Often, victims are exploited by family members, intimate partners or business owners to earn money or fame and/or gain access to a lifestyle or status they have never had before.
Those who take part in the act of sex trafficking can be any age, gender or race. They are typically employed as sex servers, dancers or prostitutes in strip clubs, hotels, massage parlors and other venues, although the crime is most common in residential brothels.
The crime can also result from a government scheme to lure nationals into forced labor schemes or to bolster economic growth through bribery and fraud. This is particularly true for countries with large populations and a shortage of workers.