“Human trafficking is a contemporary form of slavery that violates human rights,” stressed Thomas Jefferson School of Law Professor Susan Tiefenbrun on Wednesday evening, January 11, when TJSL’s Center for Global Legal Studies CGLS) teamed up with Soroptimists International of San Diego to present a special event in observance of National Human Trafficking Awareness Day. Professor Tiefenbrun, CGLS Director, spoke to a large audience following a special screening of the documentary “Indoctrinated: The Grooming of Our Children into Prostitution,” a film produced by Legacy Productions in association with the San Diego County Office of Education and The ACTION Network. She was joined by Lt. Eric Drilling of the San Diego Police Department Vice Squad, who provided interesting details about local sex trafficking and, in particular, efforts to crack down on prostitution involving underage girls. The 30-minute film includes exclusive footage from the streets of San Diego as well as interviews with former sexually exploited youth. Law enforcement, prosecutors, government officials, social service agencies, and former exploiters are also interviewed, providing shocking statistics. The film also uncovers the scope and destructive nature of child sex trafficking and teaches parents and youth about the tactics used by pimps and gangs to recruit, groom, psychologically coerce and indoctrinate their victims into a life of sexual exploitation and violence. “It’s an economic problem that needs an economic solution,” said Professor Tiefenbrun, who has been writing and speaking about sex slavery and human trafficking for many years and her expertise is recognized by human rights organizations around the world. “This is BIG BUSINESS that will soon replace drugs as the second largest economic crime in the world, behind the sale of illegal weapons.” Both Professor Tiefenbrun and Lt. Drilling discussed how the sale of women and children on the Internet is rising and becoming another serious problem. Escorts services and other types of online ads, are being used to disguise much of today’s sex slavery crimes, said Lt. Drilling.
Also speaking was Kath Rogers of Californians Against Slavery, who circulated petitions for the CASE Act - Californians Against Sexual Exploitation - an initiative that would revamp laws on human trafficking to make them tougher.