The U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Western District of Missouri launched the Human Trafficking Rescue Project (HTRP) in 2006 to combat human trafficking. The federal task force is comprised of federal, state and local law enforcement agencies. The task force has also partnered with non-government organizations to provide necessary services for victims of human trafficking. HTRP has become one of the most successful human trafficking task forces in the country. The investigation and prosecution of human trafficking, known as modern day slavery, has been and continues to be a top priority at the U.S. Attorney’s Office in the Western District of Missouri.
HTRP has investigated both commercial sex trafficking and forced labor violations. While the prosecutions have resulted in array of charges, they are predominately prosecuted under the Trafficking Victims Protection Act (TVPA). The cases have involved the rescue of international and domestic victims.
(View a list of recent press releases.)
The U.S. Attorney’s Office in the Western District of Missouri continues to be a leader in the fight against human trafficking and has prosecuted more trafficking cases than any other District in the United States. The U.S. Attorney’s Office was the first to utilize the TVPA to address the demand side of human trafficking by also prosecuting the customers of sex trafficking victims. The U.S. Attorney’s Office also broke new ground by being the first to prosecute a parent for trafficking their own child; to charge the act of advertising trafficking victims online; and to utilize the TVPA to prosecute intra-state sex trafficking of children. The U.S. Attorney’s Office was also the first to combine the TVPA with the Racketeering Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act (RICO) and to utilize the newly enacted fraud in foreign labor contracting statute to charge an international trafficking enterprise.
HTRP embodies the Justice Department’s victim-centered approach because it is specifically engineered to aid in identifying victims, providing them with immediate protection and support, and then working with them to further investigate and prosecute the traffickers.
The law enforcement arm of the task force consists of several primary investigatory agencies: Federal Bureau of Investigation; U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement; U.S. Department of Labor – Office of the Inspector General; U.S. Department of Labor – Division of Wage and Hour; U.S. Department of Health and Human Services; Kansas City, Missouri, Police Department; and the Independence, Missouri Police Department.
The victim services arm of the task force is the Coalition Against Human Trafficking (CAHT). CAHT consists of numerous non-government organizations which collaborate with HTRP to provide necessary services for the victims of trafficking.
HTRP is led by the U.S. Attorney’s Office Human Trafficking Coordinator, Assistant U.S. Attorney, Cynthia L. Cordes.
If you have a tip regarding possible human trafficking, please call the hotline: 1-888-428-7581.
December 11, 2013
September 12, 2013
September 11, 2013
Lebanon Man Sentenced to 20 Years for Coercing a Minor to Become a Sex Slave; Two Customers Also Sentenced for Sex Trafficking
September 10, 2013
August 6, 2013
April 10, 2013
January 15, 2013
December 6, 2012
Lebanon Woman Pleads Guilty to Sex Trafficking Conspiracy; Victim was Tortured, Coerced as a Sex Slave
March 6, 2012
March 5, 2012
February 29, 2012
January 27, 2012
High-ranking Taiwan Representative will be Deported;
Paid $80,000 toVictims, Must Pay Cost of Incarceration, Deportation
January 5, 2012
December 20, 2011
Kirkwood Man Pleads Guilty to Sex Trafficking; Will Receive 20 Years in Prison for Torturing Woman Who Was Coerced As Sex Slave
November 18, 2011
High-Ranking Taiwan Representative Pleads Guilty to Felony Charge, Pays $80,000 Restitution to Victims and Will Be Deported
October 19, 2011
October 12, 2011
July 25, 2011
April 27, 2011
April 21, 2011
March 30, 2011
Lebanon woman indicted, more charges filed in sex trafficking scheme, murder-for-hire;
Victim tortured as slave, forced into sex trafficking and forced labor
March 7, 2011
February 24, 2011
Springfield man pleads guilty to sex-trafficking conspiracy, admits torturing woman
coerced as sex slave
Woman tortured as slave, victim of sex trafficking and forced labor trafficker;
Four customers indicted for sex trafficking conspiracy
Eight Uzbekistan nationals among 12 charged with racketeering, human trafficking, immigration violations;
$6 million scheme to employ illegal aliens at hotels, other sites in 14 states
Naval recruiter among four men indicted for sex trafficking of a child
Undercover sting leads to first-ever human trafficking charges for attempting to pay for sex with children
United States Attorney for the Western District of Missouri is pleased to bring you
The Briefing Room highlights the priorities of U.S. Attorneys' offices across the country.