Michelle Nasser, Assistant U.S. Attorney, Northern District of Illinois: In order to have a successful prosecution, it involves detection of the crime, investigation, prosecution, and providing appropriate services to the victims. And for all four of those stages, it’s really important for the state and federal and local law enforcement to be able to work together.
James Fitzgerald, Lieutenant, Seattle Police Department: In our john sting, during the actual arrests, officers will want to know more from the john—if their goal was to find an underage victim, if they can identify a pimp—so give us investigative leads.
Alfred Tribble, Jr.: You’ve got everybody discussing the same leads and sharing information.
Amy, Survivor Advocate: The code enforcement and the health inspectors that already have a lawful ability to enter the businesses—they can be trained in human trafficking and look for signs without intimidating the managers and potential victims that might be in there as well.
Alfred Tribble, Jr.: They can go into an establishment with a lot less paperwork and start looking.
Michelle Nasser: We look for other corroborative evidence. Those can be weapons. It can be photos. We have found charts, which are almost the equivalent of drug ledgers, where the victims are writing down dates for the clients where they are going to go engage in a commercial sex act. Because sometimes a trafficking case is hard to make, there are other charges that either can be an addition or a replacement to a trafficking charge. There can be a child pornography charge, kidnapping charges, immigration charges, extortion charges, felon in possession of a firearm. Those charges can ensure that that evidence gets into trial. Oftentimes, the defendant will post their victims on online advertisements. We can get electronic evidence in that form that also helps to corroborate the victim.