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Police see uptick in sex trafficking crimes across Valley

Posted at 10:44 PM, Apr 26, 2017

Valley police are seeing an uptick in sex trafficking incidents, according to a Mesa Police sergeant who investigates such cases.

The increase, though, could be because police are treating sex cases more seriously, said Sgt. Domenick Kaufman.
Prostitution, he said, used to be looked at like a traffic ticket.

That’s no longer the case.

Police arrest everyone, Kaufman said of prostitution customers.

Arizona DPS troopers rescued nine juveniles who were being trafficked or at risk of being trafficked in 2016, the agency said.

The victims were between 14 and 17 years old, and all were runaways.

Kaufman said he wants parents to talk to their children about trafficking; he does not want his own son to be a customer, nor does he want his daughter to be trafficked. 

Men are usually the customers, and women usually the victims, Kaufman said.