A family in Queens, New York, accused of operating a sex trafficking ring, was found guilty on Thursday.
The New York Post reported Friday that the family’s elaborate scheme that began in 2002 involved young women and girls from Mexico.
The outlet continued:
Luz Elvira Cardona, 35, her partner Jose Facundo Zarate Morales, 34, as well as her mother Blanca Hernandez Morales, 53, and the older woman’s partner, Roberto Cesar Cid Dominguez, 60, were all found guilty Thursday after a four-week jury trial in Brooklyn Federal Court.
Officials said that in 2007, Cardona footed the bill for her 15-year-old niece to travel from her home in Mexico to New York where she could find employment in the janitorial industry.
However, officials said the girl’s aunt and Morales made a deal with a client to sell the victim’s virginity, and the teenager was later forced to have sex with numerous men on a daily basis.
— New York Post (@nypost) October 20, 2023
The family allegedly lured victims into coming to America for a better life. However, they are accused of later pressuring them into prostitution.
Sex trafficking is defined as “a type of human trafficking and is a form of modern-day slavery,” according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) website:
It is a serious public health problem that negatively affects the well-being of individuals, families, and communities. Human trafficking occurs when a trafficker exploits an individual with force, fraud, or coercion to make them perform commercial sex or work.
It involves the use of force, fraud, or coercion to make an adult engage in commercial sex acts. However, any commercial sexual activity with a minor, even without force, fraud, or coercion, is considered trafficking.
Per the Post article, the defendants were found guilty of multiple crimes including sex trafficking and promotion of prostitution. They may face life behind bars except for Cid Dominguez who may face nearly 40 years in custody.
“Dominguez also allegedly bribed Village of Brewster Police Officer Wayne Peiffer with free sexual services in exchange for his efforts to shield the organization from arrests, according to prosecutors,” the Post report said, adding he pleaded guilty in 2022 regarding the case.
In September, officials arrested numerous illegal aliens during a human trafficking sting in Polk County, Florida, according to Breitbart News.
“Of those illegal aliens, 12 were men seeking prostitutes, 18 were prostitutes, and three were victims of human trafficking,” the outlet said.
In April, a Convention of States Action/Trafalgar Group survey found that a plurality of likely U.S. general election voters felt the trafficking of women and children was the most troubling part of the crisis at the U.S.-Mexico border, Breitbart News reported.