human trafficking

Human Trafficking
6:47 pm
Thu March 13, 2014

Wagner Takes Aim At Publications Faciliating Sex Trafficking

U.S. Rep. Ann Wagner, R-Ballwin, speaks Thursday at the Old Courthouse downtown. Wagner is sponsoring a bill allowing prosecutors to go after publications like Backpage.com.
Credit Jason Rosenbaum, St. Louis Public Radio

There was a time when Katie Rhodes was sold for sex out of nightclubs, strip clubs, magazines and online websites. She was part of an estimated $45 million industry of what she called “selling human beings online.” 

“It’s a lot of money, said Rhodes, the founder of the Healing Action Network. “It’s a lot of economic incentive to keep this industry going.”

Rhodes said it’s crucial that third-party facilitators of prostitution are held accountable. That’s why she’s supportive of Rep. Ann Wagner’s legislation taking aim at publications advertising human trafficking.

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Code Of Conduct
11:08 pm
Mon January 13, 2014

Commentary: Informed People Can Help Reduce Sex Trafficking

Molly Hackett
Credit Provided by Nix Conference and Meeting Management

Jan. 11 is Human Trafficking Awareness Day, and January is National Slavery and Human Trafficking Prevention Month.

You may assume that human trafficking has nothing to do with you, and that there’s nothing you can do about it. If so, you would be wrong.

The average age of a child recruited into sex trafficking is just 12. When we tell that to people who know little about human trafficking, particularly child sex trafficking, we see them literally take a step back.

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World Series 2013
2:51 pm
Mon October 21, 2013

Episcopal Leaders In Boston, St. Louis Use World Series To 'Strike Out' Human Trafficking

(St. Louis Cardinals)

Updated at bottom on October 22 with bets from the Archdiocese.

Updated at 3:30 p.m. to clarify quote about child trafficking.

The leaders of the Episcopal cathedrals in Boston and St. Louis are betting that the World Series between the Red Sox and Cardinals will help combat human trafficking and prostitution in their cities.

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Human Trafficking
12:12 pm
Sat August 4, 2012

Illinois getting tougher on human trafficking

If a vote on the latest proposal for temporary pay cuts passes at a East St. Louis Fraternal Order of Police meeting on Thursday, 16 police officers laid off Jan. 1 could be reinstated (via Flickr/davidsonscott15).

Illinois is getting tougher on those involved in human trafficking and forcing the vulnerable into prostitution.
 
 Gov. Pat Quinn signed a law Saturday that strengthens the ability of prosecutors to target those behind what he called "a tragic trade."
 
The measure also offers greater protection to the victims, who are often from vulnerable groups like runaways, abused children and immigrants.

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Sex Trafficking
11:43 am
Mon January 30, 2012

Hotels asked to help stop sex trafficking

(via Flickr/vauvau)

A suburban St. Louis event planner is seeking to enlist hotels in the fight against human trafficking of minors, particularly for sex.

The St. Louis Post-Dispatch reports that Nix Conference & Meeting Management has begun pressuring the 500 or so hotels it does business with to sign a code of conduct in the effort to protect children from trafficking.

Crime
12:37 pm
Tue December 20, 2011

Defendant in Mo. sex slave case changes plea

(via Flickr/steakpinball)

A suburban St. Louis man has pleaded guilty to participating in the commercial sex trafficking of a woman whom prosecutors allege was coerced into being a sex slave.

Thirty-three-year-old Bradley Cook of Kirkwood entered the plea Tuesday in federal court in Kansas City.

The case revolves around a woman who said she was a teenager when she moved into the rural Lebanon, Mo., trailer of co-defendant Edward Bagley and his wife. The accuser said she was used as a sex slave for years and came to authorities only after going into cardiac arrest after a torture session.

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Morning round-up
9:27 am
Wed July 13, 2011

Morning headlines: Wednesday, July 13, 2011

People convicted of human trafficking in Mo. will face longer maximum sentences under a bill signed by Gov. Jay Nixon July 12, 2011.
UPI/Bill Greenblatt

Nixon signs human trafficking bill

People convicted of human trafficking in Missouri will face longer maximum sentences under a bill signed by Gov. Jay Nixon.

The legislation addresses convictions for trafficking for slavery, forced labor or sexual exploitation and abuse through forced labor. Those crimes now carry maximum sentences of 15 years in prison.

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hotel signs code
5:17 pm
Tue July 12, 2011

Hotel signs code to prevent sex trafficking

Sister Kathy McCluskey speaks at the signing of the ECPAT code at the Millennium Hotel St. Louis Tuesday. Hotel General Manager Dominic Smart stands behind.
Maria Altman St. Louis Public Radio

The Millennium Hotel St. Louis signed a code Tuesday to help prevent the sex trafficking of children.

The move came as nearly 900 Sisters of St. Joseph gathered for a three-day event at the Millennium.

Executive director of the Federation of Sisters of St. Joseph in the U.S., Kathy McCluskey, says they’re working to inform Americans about the issue of child sex trafficking.

"What we’ve discovered is when you do that people will recognize the horror of it and immediately want to learn what can be done to prevent it at every level," McCluskey said.

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Morning round-up
9:21 am
Thu March 3, 2011

Morning headlines: Thursday, March 3, 2011

Shirley Phelps-Roper, a member of Westboro Baptist Church, during a protest. Despite a U.S. supreme court ruling Wed. in favor of such demonstrators, St. Charles and St. Charles County leaders say they will fight the protests.
(via Flickr/k763)
  • According to the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, St. Charles and St. Charles County leaders say they will push ahead in the fight against anti-gay protests at military funerals. That's a despite a U.S. Supreme Court ruling Wednesday in favor of such demonstrators. In an 8-to-1 ruling, the high court said Kansas-based Westboro Baptist Church doesn't have to pay damages to the family of a Marine from Maryland.
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MO Statehouse
12:23 pm
Mon January 31, 2011

Bill would boost Mo. penalties for human trafficking

Democratic Rep. Jason Kander on the floor of the Missouri House of Representatives on Jan. 27, 2011. (Courtesy Tim Bommel and the House Communications Office)
Tim Bommel House Communications Office

A state representative has announced plans to introduce a bill to increase penalties for human trafficking convictions in Missouri.

Democratic Rep. Jason Kander said the measure he plans to introduce this week would boost Missouri penalties for human trafficking to the same level as federal statutes. He said federal penalties for human trafficking range from fines to five years and up to life in prison. Most Missouri human trafficking penalties go up to 15 years in prison.

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