CHARLOTTE, N.C. — Law enforcement and nonprofits teamed up to take down human trafficking operations leading up to Sunday’s NASCAR Coca-Cola 600 race, according to U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s Homeland Security Investigations.
Law enforcement teams, including local, state and federal agencies, found and worked with more than 15 possible victims of human trafficking.
Investigators said 15 of these potential victims shared details of their situations, and several will now work with victim service representatives to rebuild their lives.
One person was arrested after dropping off a victim. The person arrested was identified as a possible human trafficker and was charged by the state with felony possession with intent to distribute narcotics, HSI reports.
Two other people were also arrested on outstanding warrants.
None of the victims faced charges related to their trafficking.
“Criminals often capitalize on large, special events to conduct illicit activity, including the trafficking of human beings,” said John Eisert, acting special agent in charge of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s Homeland Security Investigations Charlotte. “HSI conducts victim-centered trafficking investigations where the rescue and stabilization of victims is just as important as the prosecution of traffickers.”
The agencies involved include ICE’s HSI, the FBI, the North Carolina State Bureau of Investigation, the Cabarrus County Sheriff’s Office, the York County Sheriff’s Office and the Rock Hill Police Department.
In addition, an FBI victim specialist, as well as nonprofit organizations A21, Present Age Ministries, and My Safe Haven, provided victim services.