Thursday, July 27, 2006
From USATODAY.com: "Innocence Lost," is a project launched in 2003 by the Justice Department. The FBI set up 14 task forces in cities with the most reports of child prostitution; now the task forces are in 27 cities. The project has produced 543 arrests and 94 convictions, says Drew Oosterbaan, chief of the Justice Department's child exploitation section.
Legal filings in "Innocence Lost" cases reveal how pimps recruit and abuse teen prostitutes:
- A Chelsea, Mass., woman, Evelyn Diaz was charged this month with recruiting girls who were 13, 15 and 16 to work as prostitutes. FBI special agent Tamara Harty testified that one girl, 13 at the time, told agents that Diaz took her shopping and to restaurants, then to clients in New York.
- Juan Rico Doss of Reno was convicted last month of recruiting girls 14 and 16 to work as prostitutes in California. They were told to lie about their ages if arrested.
- In Detroit, four Ohio residents were charged in December with holding girls as prisoners and making them call their pimp "Daddy."
- Indictments of 16 people in Harrisburg, Pa., in December alleged that one 12-year-old girl was forced to have sex to pay for her grandfather's crack cocaine.
"Innocence Lost' will continue, Oosterbaan says. "When I see cases cropping up in places like Harrisburg," he says, "that suggests that the problem is more pervasive than people might think."
Rest of Article. . . [Mark Godsey]