Quantcast

Vermont takes on human trafficking - WCAX.COM Local Vermont News, Weather and Sports-

Vermont takes on human trafficking

Montpelier, Vermont - September 28, 2010

One of Vermont's most recent cases of human trafficking was uncovered when John Green, 49, sexually assaulted two Korean employees at a massage parlor in Burlington. During the investigation police discovered the women were part of a sex slavery ring where Korean women were being smuggled into the U.S. from Canada.

Vermont Attorney General Bill Sorrell says smugglers convince people to come here by promising high paying jobs and sometimes schooling.

"And then when they get here they don't speak the language, they don't have immigration papers, if they even had a passport it's been taken from them, and they're forced to work and they almost never get out of debt," said Sorrell, D-Vermont.

Sorrell is head of a task force created by lawmakers last spring. It was prompted by cases like Green's and the bust of several sex slavery rings at massage parlors around Chittenden County in 2004.

The task force heard about more cases of possible trafficking from Art Edersheim, a professor at the Vermont Law School. In his clinical work Edersheim says he has been approached by people who said they were promised an education at Vermont colleges and then forced to work at area resorts.

"They were very, very nervous about having any contact with law enforcement and that's one of the big obstacles we face," Edersheim said.

Towns like Middlebury have already adopted policies that say they won't report people who are in the country illegally if they are victims of crime.

The task force plans to recommend that lawmakers pass a comprehensive anti-trafficking bill. It will give law enforcement tool and training to identify and fight cases of human trafficking and give victims assistance as their cases work their way through the courts.

"Law enforcement, any law enforcement agent really, can say this person is being helpful in the investigation, they've reported a case of potential human trafficking and so forth, which is what you really need," Edersheim said.

That will give trafficking victims a chance to apply for legal residency and hopefully come forward before they become victims of other crimes too.

The task force will present its complete findings to lawmakers this January.

Bianca Slota - WCAX News

  • Local NewsMore>>

  • New fundraising numbers in the race for Vt. Governor

    New fundraising numbers in the race for Vt. Governor

    Tuesday, September 2 2014 11:03 PM EDT2014-09-03 03:03:04 GMT
    Fundraising numbers are in from the candidates running for Vermont's top public office. Governor Peter Shumlin continues to out-raise his Republican opponent Scott Milne. Since August 15th, Governor Shumlin running for his third term in office has added 34 thousand dollars to his war chest. He's now raised over 600 thousand dollars this campaign. Scott Milne raised just 10 thousand dollars bringing his total to 53,000. The Milne campaign has now spent 8 thousand more dollars than it has broug...
    Fundraising numbers are in from the candidates running for Vermont's top public office. Governor Peter Shumlin continues to out-raise his Republican opponent Scott Milne. Since August 15th, Governor Shumlin running for his third term in office has added 34 thousand dollars to his war chest. He's now raised over 600 thousand dollars this campaign. Scott Milne raised just 10 thousand dollars bringing his total to 53,000. The Milne campaign has now spent 8 thousand more dollars than it has broug...
  • Mechanic accused of illegal car inspection ring

    Mechanic accused of illegal car inspection ring

    Tuesday, September 2 2014 11:03 PM EDT2014-09-03 03:03:01 GMT
    A Springfield mechanic is accused of operating an illegal car inspection sticker ring. 29 year old Benjamin Millay allegedly stole around 30 inspection stickers from his former employer the Springfield Auto Mart and sold them on the side to cars that otherwise would not have passed inspection. Tuesday he pleaded not guilty to a single count of embezzlement. After providing police with a written confession Millay was released to await trail. Vermont inspectors are now working to track down tho...
    A Springfield mechanic is accused of operating an illegal car inspection sticker ring. 29 year old Benjamin Millay allegedly stole around 30 inspection stickers from his former employer the Springfield Auto Mart and sold them on the side to cars that otherwise would not have passed inspection. Tuesday he pleaded not guilty to a single count of embezzlement. After providing police with a written confession Millay was released to await trail. Vermont inspectors are now working to track down tho...
  • Arson investigation underway for Dummerston church

    Arson investigation underway for Dummerston church

    Tuesday, September 2 2014 11:02 PM EDT2014-09-03 03:02:53 GMT
    An arson investigation is underway at a church in Dummerston.
    An arson investigation is underway at a church in Dummerston.
  • Autopsy confirms gender of body found in Massena

    Autopsy confirms gender of body found in Massena

    Tuesday, September 2 2014 11:02 PM EDT2014-09-03 03:02:57 GMT
    New information about a dead body discovered in Massena last week.
    New information about a dead body discovered in Massena last week.
  • Former CVU english teacher dies in Hawaii

    Former CVU english teacher dies in Hawaii

    Tuesday, September 2 2014 10:02 PM EDT2014-09-03 02:02:12 GMT
    A former Champlain Valley Union High School english teacher has died in Hawaii.
    A former Champlain Valley Union High School english teacher has died in Hawaii.
  • ISIS claims it beheaded another US journalist

    ISIS claims it beheaded another US journalist

    Tuesday, September 2 2014 7:24 PM EDT2014-09-02 23:24:15 GMT
    ISIS claims it has beheaded another United States journalist with ties to our region.
    ISIS claims it has beheaded another United States journalist with ties to our region.
  • 2nd trial begins for Vt. prison guard

    2nd trial begins for Vt. prison guard

    Tuesday, September 2 2014 12:25 PM EDT2014-09-02 16:25:40 GMT
    A prison guard accused of sexually assaulting a female inmate was back in court Tuesday.
    A prison guard accused of sexually assaulting a female inmate was back in court Tuesday.
  • Bicyclist dies after injury in Waterbury

    Bicyclist dies after injury in Waterbury

    Tuesday, September 2 2014 6:24 PM EDT2014-09-02 22:24:11 GMT
    A bicyclist has died after being injured in Waterbury.
    A bicyclist has died after being injured in Waterbury.
Powered by WorldNow
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 WorldNow and WCAX. All Rights Reserved. For more information on this site, please read our Privacy Policy and Terms of Service.