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Teenage Victim Brings Down Human Trafficking Ring in San Jose

Posted on in Criminal Defense

San Jose criminal defense attorneyProstitution, soliciting a prostitute, and pandering or pimping out the sexual services of others are all serious crimes in San Jose. Depending on any prior offenses you have on your record, you could face heavy fines and a jail sentence if you are charged with these offenses. However, if these charges are related to human trafficking, the penalties vary depending on a person's role in the crime. In early June, a 14-year-old runaway made a phone call which brought down a trafficking ring that operated locally and in other areas throughout the state. Those running the ring will face numerous criminal charges, and the girls or women forced to prostitute themselves are considered victims of the crime. 

Trafficking Ring Busted in San Jose 

Local police are crediting a 14-year-old girl’s actions with helping to bust a human trafficking ring operating in the area. The girl originally ran away from her home in Flint, Michigan in September of 2018 and headed towards Chicago. Once there, she was kidnapped by three men and forced to perform sexual acts. She was eventually brought to California, where the men traveled with the girl and several other women up and down the state, forcing them to act as prostitutes. At their most recent stop in San Jose, the girl managed to get to a phone and dialed a nationwide crisis text line. 

Through the phone call, police were able to identify the group’s location and rushed to raid their rooms at the Motel 6 on Fontaine Road. They arrested three men ranging in age from 39 to 54, one of whom was from Sacramento. The men were booked into the Santa Clara County Jail and charged with a variety of offenses, which include kidnapping, pimping and pandering, and human trafficking. In addition to the young girl, two other women were rescued in the raid. None of them face criminal charges, and all are being provided services through local and national anti-human trafficking organizations. 

The Difference Between Prostitution and Human Trafficking

Under the California Penal Code, anyone who engages in sex acts for pay can face criminal charges, as can those who purchase these services. While classified as a misdemeanor, prostitution and soliciting can result in penalties of fines up to $1,000 and up to 90 days in jail, depending on any prior offenses. 

The difference in human trafficking cases is that sex workers are generally forced into selling their bodies. Organizers of these rings may kidnap unwilling participants, as in the above case, and they are likely to deprive their victims of food, clothing, and other basic necessities, essentially keeping them as prisoners or slaves. 

Contact a San Jose Sex Crime Defense Attorney for Help

At the Jachimowicz Law Group, we know that some people arrested for prostitution charges are actually victims of human trafficking. In these situations, our office is here to help prove the facts in your case. Contact our skilled San Jose criminal defense attorneys at 408-246-5500 and request a free, confidential consultation today.    

Source: 

https://www.mercurynews.com/2019/05/30/courageous-teen-helps-break-up-san-jose-human-trafficking-operation/

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