Child Sex Trafficking - Bring Justice

Traffickers, buyers and those who profit from exploiting children must be held accountable. Law enforcement and prosecutors need the proper training and tools to adequately prosecute these criminals.

In pursuit of this goal, it is critical to maintain a child-centered perspective and a trauma-informed response in order to ensure the survivor's needs are met and that the survivor is empowered to participate in bringing justice to his/her exploiters.

CSTT brings justice for victims by:

  • Providing funding and training to criminal justice partners;
  • Empowering victim participation in investigations and prosecutions;
  • Shifting cultural norms from blaming victims to holding exploiters accountable.
  • Combatting emerging methods of exploitation.

Resources

Programs Supported by Grants from the Office of the Governor

  • Project 180: Pilot program at Harris County District Attorney’s Office that diverts young adults arrested for prostitution from arrest to services and gathers interview and analytical information to investigate and prosecute their exploiters. Read an assessment of the program by Dr. Rebecca Pfeffer.
  • Human Trafficking Fusion Center: CSTT is partnering with Collective Liberty to provide free and full access to the Human Trafficking Fusion Center to investigators and prosecutors in Texas. The HT Fusion Center provides innovative tools that streamline and enhance investigations and prosecutions, including:

    - intelligence analysis to put actionable intel into the hands of investigators
    - curated proprietary data focused specifically on information necessary to identify sex and labor traffickers,
    - shared data from law enforcement agencies across the country, including thousands of known traffickers,
    - artificial intelligence to collect and analyze large amounts of data quickly and accurately,
    - networks of like-minded investigators and prosecutors, and
    - expert and hands-on training and technical assistance. 

    The Fusion Center empowers investigators to plan proactive operations and investigations and build cases against traffickers while being truly trauma-responsive to potential victims, without having to rely on victim cooperation and testimony.  In its first year, the HT Fusion Center has already resulted in 124 cases referred for prosecution for trafficking arrests, including felony buyer arrests, and 87 victims connected to services.
  • Specialized prosecution units in Harris and Dallas counties.
  • Office of the Attorney General Sexual Extortion Investigation Project: Provides resources for investigating online sexual extortion cases.
  • Lighthouse: CSTT partners with Allies Against Slavery to develop and implement Lighthouse, a first of its kind software tool that aggregates statewide data, trends, and insights about human trafficking.  Lighthouse empowers stakeholders to screen vulnerable youth for trafficking and connect them to services.  It also allows stakeholders to see what human trafficking looks like in Texas as well as the impact of anti-trafficking efforts and investments. Lighthouse is continuously growing to include additional data sets, insights, and visualizations.