Women, Children Become Sex Slaves In Ohio

Prices Put On Bodies, Souls

COLUMBUS, Ohio — Teenage runaways, many from Ohio, are part of a booming
business of selling bodies and souls, NBC 4 reported.

At age 15, Tina Frundt became part of a human-trafficking network. A man
convinced her to run away from her family in Chicago and come to Ohio,
NBC 4′s Monique Ming Laven reported.

“The dream he sold me was that he had this place in Cleveland, and you
can do better there,” Frundt said. “You can have a bigger house and work
harder there.”

Several other girls her age were at the home where Frundt stayed, along
with controlling pimps with a brutal initiation process, Laven reported.

Frundt said they beat the girls, locked them in closets and raped them,
before putting them in a sex-slave pipeline.

“They take you to a certain city and they may take you to a block where
you have to be out and soliciting people, but that’s about as much as you
know,” Frundt said.

Kathleen Davis of Wright State University recently completed a report,
called “Human Trafficking and Modern Day Slavery in Ohio.”

“They were being moved from state to state, truck stops and motels, to
prostitute and earn pimps money,” Davis said.

She said the sex system thrives on teenage runaways, including many from
Ohio.

The FBI identifies Toledo as sex slavery’s biggest teenage recruiting
center in the state.

There is also a foreign component, Laven reported. About 18,000 women and
children are brought into the country every year for the trade. Some of
them, allegedly, were dealt through businesses like a massage parlor that
was busted in Columbus.

“It’s sort of almost like a slave trade,” said Franklin County Deputy
Chief Steve Martin. “These females are shipped from one location to
another, all over the country. Every time we get driver’s licenses or IDs
from them, we get them from Boston, LA, Texas.”

No one knows how big the problem is in Ohio. Davis said that is because
the state has no comprehensive laws to identify, track and prosecute
human traffickers, only the people they enslave.

“No one ever approached me one time about putting the trafficker behind
bars,” Frundt said. “Most often, the women and children are arrested for
child prostitution.”

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