CNMI: Called Human Trafficking HotSpot by DOJ

May 21, 2008

The Saipan Tribune is reporting that the US Department of Justice considers the CNMI a hotspot for human trafficking. Incidences of human trafficking almost doubled for the calendar year 2007. The paper reports:

Fifty victims of human trafficking sought assistance from Karidat’s Guma Esperansa House of Hope for CY 2007, up from the 28 reported in the previous year.

Compared with other U.S. territories, this figure is far way up, with American Samoa Hawaii and Guam recording less than 10 put together.

According to research, the U.S. Department of Justice itself considers the CNMI a hotspot for human trafficking due to its close proximity to many Asian countries and its lax immigration system.

Samantha Vardaman, director of programs for Shared Hope International is visiting the islands to study and gather data on human trafficking in the CNMI. Shared Hope International is a program that "rescues and restores victims of sex-trafficking.

Guma Esperansa is a non-profit agency that provides shelter for women of domestic violence and human trafficking. For mor information see the sidebar.

Here are some other posts on human trafficking in the CNMI:

Human Trafficking in the CNMI

Putting an End to Human Trafficking

Not Old News!

Human Trafficking Sentences

CNMI – A Back Door to Trafficking

Human Trafficker Sentenced


Anonymous said...

There is a story in the Saipan Tribune today, May 23rd, about how the Shared Hope International study may lead to further resources in the CNMI to combat human trafficking.

Also, the U.S. Attorney's Office has hired a fourth Assistant U.S. Attorney. Here are the numbers of AUSAs we've had stationed in the CNMI:

1987: 1
1994: 2
1997: 3
2008: 4

Thank you Wendy, Steve Woodruff, Mr. Ombudsperson, and even those people of goodwill within the CNMI government for all you are doing to increase the law enforcement resources to fight abuse.

We get more results working together than fighting each other.

More power!

Wendy said...

Thanks for the information on the story - I hope the Shared Hope Study is beneficial and leads to further resources.