human trafficking

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Escape After 30 Years as an 'Unperson'

'New Yorker' tells horrifying story of 'Rosie,' who grew up in dad's South London cult

(Newser) - In 2013, a 30-year-old woman named Rosie escaped from a life of captivity—and her story, as told by Simon Parkin in the New Yorker , is a terrifying one of human imprisonment, beatings, and mind games. She grew up shuttled from one rundown South London home to another, always with... More »

How Escape From N. Korea Leads to Online Sex Work in China

'WaPo' details lives of women fleeing from one bad situation to another as online sex 'video chatters'

(Newser) - "Why are our lives so different, just because of where we are born?" That's the question posed to the Washington Post by Suh, a 30-year-old North Korean woman now being held in a Bangkok detention center after being busted by local cops while trying to cross from Laos... More »

Cops: Autistic Woman Kept Outside in Crate

5 planned to prostitute the woman, sheriff says

(Newser) - A Louisiana sheriff says two men and three women are accused of keeping an autistic woman outdoors with only a kennel-like crate as her shelter and planning to use her as a prostitute. Tangipahoa Parish Sheriff Daniel Edwards said Thursday that investigators searched the house last week after a report... More »

Feds: Couple Ran $45M Medicare Scam, Had an Indentured Servant

They had a fleet of luxury SUVs but paid their nanny $66 a day, threatened her

(Newser) - File under Appearances Can Be Deceiving: A Chicago-area couple whose 5,000-square-foot home came complete with a bevvy of luxury SUVs built their empire "on a lie," reports the Chicago Tribune . Richard and Maribel Tinimbang, 38 and 40, are being charged with various counts of conspiracy, paying kickbacks,... More »

Cops: Man Sells Infant Daughter to Buy iPhone

He's been jailed for 3 years

(Newser) - A Chinese man who apparently really wanted an iPhone sold his 18-day-old infant daughter on social media in order to get one, the Independent reports, citing local media. The man and the baby's mother were both 19 when they had the not-planned-for baby last year, and the man—identified... More »

How an Epic Twitter Tale Mixed Scary Truth With Fiction

The 'Washington Post' takes a deep look at Zola the stripper's incredible story

(Newser) - Since a 19-year-old Detroit stripper named Aziah King (aka Zola) tweeted out a story of epic proportions on Oct. 27, she captivated millions of online readers, including studios, producers, and even Missy Elliott, who wrote : "That Zola story wild. Ended up reading the whole thing like I was watching... More »

Number of Decomposing Bodies in Truck Rises to 71

3 people held in Hungary are reportedly from Bulgaria

(Newser) - The refrigerated truck left on an Austrian roadside didn't just contain the decomposing remains of 20 to 50 migrants as first thought. Police now say at least 71 people—59 men, eight women, and four children, believed to be Syrian refugees—died inside the vehicle, which police believe left... More »

Bodies of Migrants Found Rotting in Truck in Austria

There could be as many as 50 victims, police say

(Newser) - Police today discovered the partially decomposed bodies of at least 20 migrants piled up in a truck parked on the shoulder of an Austrian highway leading from the Hungarian border. The chief of Burgenland police, Hans Peter Doskozil, says the truck has Hungarian license plates. The state of the bodies... More »

Mass Graves Discovered in Malaysia's Jungle

139 suspected graves found in abandoned jungle camps

(Newser) - A cluster of abandoned Malaysian jungle camps used by human traffickers contained 139 suspected graves as well as barbed-wire pens likely used to cage migrants, authorities revealed today. National police chief Khalid Abu Bakar said forensics experts were exhuming the suspected graves found at 28 vacated camps in the hilly... More »

US Wants Answers on Mass Grave in Thai Jungle

Alleged human traffickers arrested after 26 bodies found

(Newser) - The bodies of 26 suspected victims of human trafficking were pulled from a mass grave deep in the Thai jungle over the weekend, and the US wants to see Thailand's government carry out a proper investigation. A State Department spokesperson says the US has been in touch with Thai... More »

AG Nominee Forced to 'Sit in Back of the Bus': Senator

Dick Durbin compares Loretta Lynch to Rosa Parks in delayed confirmation

(Newser) - Loretta Lynch is on the Senate back burner, waiting for confirmation as the new attorney general since her November nomination—first due to stalling over the president's immigration order, now over a human-trafficking bill, notes the Washington Post —and Sen. Dick Durbin isn't happy with the delay.... More »

Florida Prostitution Sting Nabs 61 People Over 4 Days

Officials say they targeted online ads for prostitution

(Newser) - A Florida prostitution sting yielded 61 arrests over four days in early December ... including that of a former Baltimore police officer. Mete Girit, 29, allegedly posted an ad for "male escort services," then, at an undercover location and apparently not very suspicious of police tactics despite his background,... More »

100 Women Sold as Brides Vanish

Vietnamese women's matchmaker also missing

(Newser) - More than 100 Vietnamese women "sold" as brides by a matchmaker have vanished in China and it's not clear whether they have fled to their homeland or something more sinister has happened. According to the China Daily , the women married bachelors in villages in Hebei province this year... More »

Global Slavery at All-Time High

There are nearly 36m slaves worldwide, rights group says

(Newser) - The latest report from a rights group drives home the disturbing fact that the peak of slavery in human history wasn't during the Roman Empire or some other distant time—it's happening right now. Nearly 36 million people around the world (more than ever before) are slaves, according... More »

Calif. University's Plan: Help Sex Slavery Survivors

Point Loma Nazarene University to offer 'Beauty for Ashes' scholarship

(Newser) - A Christian university in California has launched what it says is a first-of-its-kind scholarship to help survivors of sex trafficking start new lives. Point Loma Nazarene University has started a crowdfunding campaign and a longer-term donation page for its "Beauty for Ashes" scholarship, which gets its name from a... More »

New Element of Asian Slave Trade: 'Floating Prisons'

Reuters investigation reveals troubling development

(Newser) - "The experiences of these men recall the trans-Atlantic slave trade of centuries ago." That from a Reuters investigation into the Asian slave trade that uncovered a troubling new element to the practice. Past reports have held that Rohingya Muslims from Burma and Bangladesh willingly boarded smuggling boats in... More »

'Black Market Babies' Trying to Find Roots With DNA

New tests try to identify biological parents of off-the-books adoptees

(Newser) - About 30 people showed up at a Tennessee motel yesterday to give cheek-swab samples, in a last-ditch attempt to locate long-lost biological relatives. In the late 1950s and '60s, a Georgia clinic run by the late Dr. Thomas Hicks facilitated more than 200 off-the-books adoptions, the AP explains . With... More »

Mexico: Cartel Kidnapped Kids, Stole Their Organs

Nephew of major leader of powerful Knights Templar cartel arrested

(Newser) - Police in Mexico say they've uncovered a grisly scheme to kidnap children and sell their organs. Authorities in the Western state of Michoacan revealed yesterday that they'd arrested Manuel Plancarte Gaspar, the nephew of one of the top leaders of the Knights Templar cartel, for his alleged involvement.... More »

Ohio Man Accused of Trying to Buy 10-Year-Old 'Wife'

Robert W. Thomas Jr. is indicted after placing ad

(Newser) - A federal grand jury today indicted a 37-year-old Ohio man who police say tried to buy a 10-year-old "wife" for $400, the Cleveland Plain Dealer reports. Robert W. Thomas Jr. allegedly posted an ad seeking a young bride/sex slave online last month. "The younger the better, something in... More »

Chinese Doctor Admits She Sold Babies

Zhang Shuxia told parents their newborns were very sick, per court documents

(Newser) - A Chinese doctor has admitted in court that she stole babies from the hospital where she worked and sold them to human traffickers, state media and a court said. Zhang Shuxia, a locally respected and soon-to-retire obstetrician, told parents their newborns had congenital problems and persuaded them to "sign... More »

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