Into an India Brothel

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Human TraffickingFive girls were recently rescued from an India brothel, thanks in part to the work of the International Justice Mission. One of them was five years old. Another was ten, and was rescued from the brothel right at the time that her pimp was negotiating her sale for the very first time.

Nicholas Kristof of the New York Times reports:

Unicef has estimated that worldwide 1.8 million children enter the sex trade each year. Too many are in the United States, which should prosecute pimps much more aggressively, but the worst abuses take place in countries like Pakistan, India, Bangladesh, Nepal and Cambodia.

So I set off with the I.J.M. investigator (who wants to remain anonymous for his own safety) into the alleys of the Sonagachi red-light district one evening, slipped into the brothel, and climbed to the third floor. And there were Chutki and three other girls in a room, a pimp hovering over them. Perceiving us as potential customers, he offered them to us.

We demurred but said we’d be back.

The Kolkata police agreed to raid the brothel to free the girl. I.J.M. told them the location of the brothel at the last minute to avoid a tip-off from police ranks. The police casually asked us to lead the way in the raid since we knew what Chutki looked like and where she was kept.

So along with a carload of police, we drove up to the brothel and rushed inside to avoid giving the pimps time to hide Chutki or to escape themselves. With the I.J.M. representative in the lead, we hurtled up the stairs, brushed past the pimp and found Chutki and the three other girls in the same room where we had seen them before.

Two female social workers from I.J.M. immediately began comforting Chutki, who police said was about 15 and looked terrified. They explained that this was a police operation to rescue her, and they helped her put on a robe for modesty’s sake.

Then another of the girls in the room asked if she could be rescued — but a few days later. She explained that if she left now, the brothel-owners would blame her for the raid and possibly harm her grandmother, whose address they knew.

We told the girl that this chance might not come again. She dissolved into tears, wavered and then decided to come out. Then a third said that she wanted to escape as well.

The girls tipped off the police that the brothel-owner was in another building, arranging to sell a new girl named Raya for the very first time, either that evening or the next night. The police hurried off and returned with Raya, a wide-eyed girl of about 10 years.

It seemed that the brothel had purchased Raya just a week earlier, after her own brother-in-law tricked her and trafficked her. If the raid had been delayed by a few hours, she might have faced the first of many rapes.

With Raya was a 5-year-old girl who seemed to have been abandoned. Perhaps the brothel-owners were grooming her for sale in a few more years. So we emerged from the brothel with five lives that had just been transformed.

Equally important, one pimp had been arrested and arrest warrants had been issued for two more. There are no quick fixes to human trafficking, but experience in several countries suggests that prosecuting pimps and brothel-owners makes a difference. A study in Cebu, Philippines, found that helping police and courts target child prostitution resulted in 87 arrests over four years — and a 79 percent reduction in the number of children in the sex trade.

We drove the five girls to a police station to fill out paperwork so that they could move into shelters and receive schooling or vocational training. Raya, the 10-year-old who otherwise at that moment might have been enduring her first rape, was giggly and carefree as she pretended to drive the car. She behaved like a silly little girl — which was thrilling.

To learn more about Human Trafficking and sex slavery, check out some of these posts:

Human Trafficking Posts

  1. Sex Slaves
  2. Would You Fight Slavery?
  3. Rescue Russian Sex Slaves
  4. Rescue Russian Girls from Sex Slavery
  5. Stop Her Nightmare
  6. Another Girl Rescued Today
  7. Girls for Sale
  8. Goal Reached!
  9. I Want to be a Prostitute
  10. $52,000 raised!
  11. 31 Million Sex Slaves
  12. Renting Lacy
  13. More Than Rice
  14. Human Trafficking Ring Busted
  15. The Other Big Game
  16. Sex Slavery, Planned Parenthood, and Your Tax Dollars
  17. How to Minister to Prostitutes
  18. Wisconsin Woman Held as Sex Slave in Brooklyn
  19. Coked-Up Whore
  20. Human Trafficking has Many Faces
  21. Into an India Brothel
  22. You Need a Girl?
  23. Human Trafficking Media
  24. The Son of God is Selling Children
  25. My Girls Raised $300 to help stop Human Trafficking
  26. Rape for Profit

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Comments

  1. Ant Writes says

    This sickens me to even read this story. I just imagine my OWN daughter caught up in this, and I get very angry. This seems to be more common in lands where the is no presence of Christ.
    This reminds me of something John Quincy Adams said “When a country loses its morals, more laws must be made.”

  2. says

    Hi Jeremy,

    Great blog… going into dark places is incredible and critical to the call on all our lives. Doesn’t seem right to sit in our lounge chairs and be comfortable with all this stuff going on does it?

    Do you know about Love 146… they are pretty awesome too?

    Keep doing what you do and keep telling stories.

    Thanks
    G

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