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February 23, 2006

U.S. Department of Justice figures on human trafficking

From the U.S. Department of Justice:

In 2001, the federal government made human trafficking a top civil rights priority. Since then the U.S. Department of Justice, often working with local law enforcement agencies, has stepped up the investigation and prosecution of human traffickers.

- According to Justice Department figures, from 2001 through 2005 the Civil Rights Division and U.S. Attorneys' Offices prosecuted 287 traffickers, almost a 260 percent increase over the 80 prosecutions started during the prior five years. Of the 287 traffickers, 228 were charged with allegations of sex trafficking.

- During the period of 2001 through 2005, the Civil Rights Division and U.S. Attorneys' Offices opened 480 new investigations into human trafficking, about 325 percent more than the 113 opened in the previous five years.

- To date, federal prosecutors and other law enforcement personnel have helped 732 victims remain in the United States to assist with law enforcement efforts.

- Overall, 926 trafficking victims from 55 countries have so far been helped by the Civil Rights Division and other law enforcement personnel to be eligible for refugee-type benefits under the 2000 Trafficking Victims Protection Act.

Sources: Justice Department, Civil Rights Division

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