From Sheriff David A. Mahoney                           

            Phone - 884-3168

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 More on Human Trafficking:

Identifying a Potential Victim

Due to the covert nature of the crime, human trafficking will likely come to your attention indirectly.  Some examples of state and federal violations that may lead you to uncover elements of human trafficking include domestic violence crimes, labor disputes, prostitution and pimping offenses, shoplifting, cases of assault, along with any other crime.


Victims are trafficked for many reasons.  This may include forcing them to perform commercial sexual acts, agricultural work, housekeeping, etc.  Victims can come from all walks of life to include all socioeconomic classes, ethnicities, ages, genders, and sexual orientations.  They can also be foreign nationals or United States citizens and hold legal or illegal immigrant status.  Immigration status is irrelevant when a person has been a victim of a crime on American soil. 


Possible indicators of human trafficking include the appearance and mannerism of the workers…


(1)       Are there signs of trauma, fatigue, injuries, or other evidence of poor care?


(2)       Are the individuals withdrawn, afraid to talk, or is their communication censored?


(3)       “Are they forced by their trafficker to make frequent moves? 


(4)       Are there any behavioral indicators of severe dependency (e.g., submissive behavior, fearful behavior in the presence of others)?


(5)       Who is in physical possession of their legal documents of identification?


(6)       Who insists on providing information to law enforcement?


(7)       Are they lawfully present in the country?  Is their lawful presence in the country dependent on their marriage to their employer/trafficker?


As always, if you expect someone is a victim of human trafficking, please contact the Transylvania County Sheriff’s Office at (828) 884-3168.


Source: NC Department of Justice