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Press Release

United States Attorney’s Office Observes National Human Trafficking Prevention Month

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Western District of Tennessee

Memphis, TN – As National Human Trafficking Prevention Month draws to a close, United States Attorney Kevin G. Ritz is renewing his Office’s commitment to prosecuting human traffickers, protecting victims, empowering survivors, and preventing the proliferation of these abhorrent crimes.

Human trafficking is a crime involving the exploitation of a person for labor, services, or commercial sex using physical and/or psychological force, fraud, or coercion. The exploitation of a minor for commercial sex is human trafficking regardless of whether any form of force, fraud, or coercion is used by the trafficker.

“Whether it’s forced labor, domestic servitude, or sex trafficking of children and adults, human trafficking is the exploitation of human beings for profit and has no place in any society,” said Mr. Ritz. “Yet every day, these horrific crimes are happening in the United States and worldwide, stripping victims of their dignity, and forcing them into a life of fear and a state of servitude.”

To enhance awareness and educate the community about human trafficking, the U.S. Attorney’s Office has released a public service announcement on how to identify potential trafficking situations and where to report suspected human trafficking activity.

In that video, U.S. Attorney Ritz highlights the importance of education and outreach in the prevention, identification, and disruption of human trafficking activity, and commends community organizations for their partnership and provision of trauma-informed services to trafficking victims and survivors.


As part of its commitment to this work, the U.S. Attorney’s Office has a team of experienced prosecutors and personnel that handle human trafficking cases. In West Tennessee, this work is handled out of the Office’s National Security and Civil Rights Unit.  A federal prosecutor serves as the Western District’s Human Trafficking Coordinator and works closely with the Office’s Victim Witness Coordinator to ensure that the rights and needs of trafficking victims remain central throughout the investigation and prosecution of each case. The Office also works with non-governmental organizations and service providers to ensure that appropriate trauma-informed care and resources are made available to rescued trafficking victims and survivors.

Anyone who has information about a potential human trafficking situation or a person who may be experiencing human trafficking should contact the FBI, local law enforcement, or the National Human Trafficking Hotline at 1-888-373-7888 (text: 233733).

Updated January 29, 2024