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Lost Children: Addressing the Under – Identification of Trafficked Alien Minors in Los Angeles County

Abstract

Children are being trafficked in the United States for commercial and sexual exploitation – many of them from overseas. In April of 2002, a young Egyptian girl was freed by federal authorities from a couple’s home in Irvine, California, where she was forced to work as a domestic servant for two years. 2 During those two years, she lived in “squalid conditions.” 3 She was denied access to a formal education and was threatened with physical harm by the couple. In 2005, seven individuals were charged by federal authorities for smuggling children across the U.S.Mexico border for the purposes of selling them to American families looking to adopt foreign children. 4 In New Jersey, the Russian Mafia transported under-age girls from Eastern Europe to the U.S. and forced them to work as dancers in exotic dance clubs. 5 There are many more stories of foreign children being sold, rented, and enslaved in the U.S.

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