Fighting Sex Trafficking
Published: April 29, 2011
Sex trafficking is happening in our backyards, and the victims are our children, as suggested in “What About American Girls Sold on the Streets?,” by Nicholas D. Kristof (column, April 24). In Brooklyn, prosecutors do not turn a blind eye.
Last June, I created the Brooklyn Sex Trafficking Unit within my Rackets Division. Our mission: provide victims with comprehensive services, while aggressively prosecuting traffickers. We prosecute pimps, not victims.
A 24-hour hot line was created, to provide victims and people with knowledge of sex trafficking with a place to call. The number, (718) 250-2770, has been used by concerned citizens and parents searching for their daughters.
Recently, a young woman reported her sister being trafficked. My office and the New York Police Department investigated. One month later, two pimps were indicted for sex trafficking. Bail was $1 million. The girl was rescued.
More than 1,500 posters in five languages hang in bodegas, beauty salons and stores throughout Brooklyn. Public service announcements play on more than a dozen radio stations. We have spoken with numerous audiences, educating the community about how to spot sex trafficking.
The Brooklyn Sex Trafficking Unit has made tremendous headway. We have approximately 20 indictments and numerous open investigations. We recognize that despite our success, there is still significant work to be done.
CHARLES J. HYNES
District Attorney, Kings County
Brooklyn, April 25, 201