Disney employee, 160 persons arrested for human trafficking in Florida
Polk County Sheriff's Office and other authorities in the US state of Florida arrest 160 individuals in a week-long human trafficking sting operation called Fall Haul 2.
Polk County Sheriff Grady Judd revealed in a press conference on Friday, September 9, that the Polk County Sheriff's Office and other authorities in the US state of Florida had arrested 160 individuals in a week-long human trafficking sting operation called Fall Haul 2.
Disney employee Guillermo Perez, several school instructors such as Cameron Burke and Math teacher Carlos Gonzalez, deputy police chief Jason DiPrima of Cartersville, Georgia, in addition to Lake Correctional Institution officer Keith Nieves, and 26 married men were among those charged. Some 86 people were allegedly selling sexual services while 65 were attempting to buy it, and they all had criminal records that included 419 felonies and 619 misdemeanors. Only 16 of them were from Polk County, with the majority coming from elsewhere in Florida and 15 from out of state.
DiPrima was arrested last Thursday after responding to an undercover detective's internet ad. The deputy police chief escaped a polygraph training course in an undercover Drug Enforcement Agency cruiser, handing out $180 and a pack of White Claw Hard Seltzer to the faux lady-of-the-night before deputies slammed the cuffs on him. He had resigned by the time Judd revealed the circumstances of his demise to reporters.
The Sheriff's Office claimed that it had discovered two human trafficking victims as well as five prospective victims throughout the investigation, implying that there were others within the throng who were unwilling to come forward. If a person arrested for prostitution in Florida identified themselves as a victim of human trafficking, their arrest may be overturned.
Human trafficking in the US
Slavery is still alive in the United States, seeping through the cracks and loopholes of US labor laws that barely ever hold authorities accountable, leaving room for human rights abuses, exploitation, rape, and harassment.
A December report by The Guardian exposed this harrowing reality.
In June 2021, a farmworker from Mexico, who demanded that he remain anonymous in fear of retaliation from the abusers, revealed that he was trafficked through a 'labor' network from Mexico to Georgia, USA.
The victims paid around $950 to the traffickers - money that they borrowed from their mothers - and took trips back and forth between Mexico and the US before the traffickers told them that it'd be finally safe to leave Mexico and work in the US.