Nude female israeli teen
“Then they introduce that, ‘We have access to money, so we do what we want, we get respect in the community, we have power and a sense of control. And guess what, this is who we are, and now we’ve got your back and you’re one of us,'” says Scaife.
A girl may feel comfortable around gangs because a family member belongs to one, Scaife says. Or she might start dating a gang member, maybe even meeting him online first. This familiarity opens the door for her to allow gang members to take advantage of her. She may already view herself as property of the gang, and could see having sex with people to benefit her gang family as her duty. It escalates from there.
This type of recruitment is different from the more well established Russian and Chinese sex trafficking rings run by organized crime from these countries. Robert Trent worked in immigration law enforcement for 30 years and is very familiar with the ways they victimize people. While these operations also exploit young women, they prey specifically on people from their countries of origin who they bring to the United States for the purpose of selling them for sex, he says. They don’t recruit Americans.
Law enforcement has traditionally picked up prostitutes, charged them, jailed them, and released them to return to the sex trade. But that’s no longer the norm. It’s much more effective to recognize that the girls gangs have been prostituting are victims and should be treated as such. It helps them, and it helps officers and prosecutors catch the people responsible.
This is what Scaife of Shared Hope International tries to impart to the officers she trains. “My goal is to lay such a strong and deep foundational knowledge about this that they have a natural compassion and understanding, so they’re not immediately put off by the surface aspects, which are the attitude, the defiance,” she says.
These girls don’t self-identify as victims. Most have been convinced by their traffickers and through experience that no adults or police officers can be trusted to help them, so they’ll come across as belligerent or refuse to talk. They’re afraid of their traffickers and don’t believe anyone can get them out of the situations they’re in. That’s why it takes training to recognize their plight and help them get out.
A girl who believes you’re on her side is much more willing to testify against the gang members who took advantage of her. In fact, you’ll have difficulty getting her to speak to you at all unless you make the effort to break through her façade.
Instead of putting her in a standard interview room with a cold table and chairs, put her in a “soft room” with a sofa to sit on and give her a soda and a hamburger. You’ll be amazed at how much something so simple will mean to one of these girls, says Lt.Dan Pratt of Long Beach (Calif.) PD’s Vice Investigations. “And then when our detectives speak in their terminology they get that we understand,” Pratt says. “Once we can communicate that and how we can help them, then they open up.”
He believes that law enforcement viewing prostitutes as victims has made a major impact for the better. But it goes beyond offering food and a kind word to victims. It’s also important for all first responders to know how to recognize the signs of human trafficking so they can respond appropriately. “We don’t want an officer to respond to a domestic violence or child abuse call and not recognize it as human trafficking,” Pratt says.
And being aware of these victims’ possible vulnerabilities, such as abuse at home they may be running away from, helps law enforcement meet their needs. Placing a runaway back in the home isn’t always the best solution, yet it was the only way it was done in the old days. “Since then we’ve clued in to those things and become fully aware and partnered with non-governmental agencies,” Pratt says. “The best thing we do is investigate to find the root cause of why this person is on the street to begin with.”
The Long Beach Police Department and many other agencies work with non-governmental agencies to provide a range of services to girls so they can leave prostitution. “They help them reach their ultimate goal, whether it’s getting a job, or going to school, or going back home,” Pratt says. A drug or alcohol abuse program is usually one of the services needed to help victims get out and stay out of sex trafficking.
Because most gangs run narcotics operations, they can use their easy access to drugs to keep girls under control. In the case of the Northern Virginia Task Force sting Woolf was involved with, the sex traffickers often “paid” girls by giving them a fix of whatever drug they were addicted to and simply kept all of the cash for the gang.
Drugs and alcohol help these victimized girls numb themselves so that they can somehow cope with what they’re being forced to do, sometimes servicing more than 20 johns in a day, says Scaife.
Sex traffickers control girls by giving them only what they need, not what they want. If the trafficker always keeps them wanting, they’ll stay, they reason. It falls to law enforcement to break that cycle by helping the victims and putting away the traffickers.
Nude female israeli teen