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Sexual Trafficking Perpetrators: Too Often They Are People Known And Trusted

A male employee of the King County metro in the state of Washington has been accused of grooming and pimping his babysitter for five years.

The 45-year-old employee was booked in jail on rape and trafficking charges.

The county sheriff's office reports that the crimes began in 2008 when the victim was just 16 and continued up to 2013.

During that time the suspect groomed the victim to become a prostitute for him. He worked as her pimp and offered the young girl's services through different online sites and portals.

Court documents state that the accused was a Major in the Civil Air Patrol when he met the alleged victim who was a CAP cadet at the time. She was hired by the defendant to babysit his two children and that was when the raping started. Soon after, she moved into his basement. The wife of the accused, the mother of his kids, discovered the crime and divorced him.

The documents also indicate that the perpetrator forced his alleged victim to perform in pornographic movies and forced her to marry his barber for a green card.

The Sheriff's Office received a court order that authorized a recording of conversations between the perpetrator and the alleged victim. Court documents show that during those conversations, the perpetrator admitted to pimping his alleged victim and apologized to her several times.

Under the terms of the perpetrator's release, he cannot contact the alleged victim, or have contact with minor children, including his two children.

Siemny Kim "King County Metro employee accused of grooming and pimping his underage babysitter" https://www.kiro7.com/news/local/officers-arrest-man-suspected-of-sex-trafficking-in-king-county/923459083 (Feb. 21, 2019).

Commentary and Checklist

In 2017, approximately one out of seven endangered runaways reported to the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children (NCMEC) were likely child sex trafficking victims. Of those, 88 percent were in the care of foster care or social services when they ran away.

Also in 2017, the National Hotline and BeFree Textline identified 7,255 victims of sex trafficking.

Experts found that “at-risk-youth” are particularly vulnerable targets for traffickers.

It is not clear what the alleged victim’s situation was, before the perpetrator manipulated her into participating in pornographic movies and becoming a prostitute. Traffickers are typically experts at exploiting a child’s vulnerabilities without having to use any force.

What can safe adults do to help a victim of trafficking?

  • Be aware of the signs of possible child trafficking and ask follow up questions.
  • To report a tip, call the National Human Trafficking Resource Center at 1-888-373-7888 (24/7). You can call federal law enforcement directly to report suspicious activity and get help from the Department of Homeland Security at 1-866-347-2423 (24/7), or submit a tip online at www.ice.gov/tips, or from the U.S. Department of Justice at 1-888-428-7581.
  • Children are often trafficked for use as cheap labor, so avoid purchasing items from manufacturers known to use child labor. Check out the Department of Labor's "List of Goods Produced by Child Labor or Forced Labor."
  • Distribute public awareness materials available from the Department of Health and Human Services or Department of Homeland Security.
  • Volunteer or donate funds to a local anti-trafficking organization.
  • Encourage local schools to partner with students and include the issue of modern day slavery in their curriculum. As a parent, educator, or school administrator, be aware of how traffickers target school-aged children.
  • If a child is in urgent need of assistance, contact law enforcement or child protective services to report abuse, neglect, or exploitation of a child or The Childhelp® National Child Abuse Hotline: 1.800.4.A.CHILD. (1.800.422.4453).
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