New Human Trafficking Task Force already hard at work

SAN JOSE, Calif. (KGO) -- Just three months since its funding, a new Human Trafficking Task Force in Santa Clara County is already working three cases and seeking more tips from the public. It's going after the sex trade and forced labor cases.

"We actually have an international case that we're working right now with multiple countries," stated Laurie Smith with the Sheriff's office. "We're hoping to get charges filed, but we're going to dedicate resources. If we have a task force that's looking, that's going to make it a lot easier."

The task force cannot be very specific about these cases because minors are involved and because the cases are on-going. In one case, a suspect is in custody.

Supervisor Dave Cortese, who is running for San Jose mayor, helped form the task force by sponsoring an $850,000 budget item for it back in June. The money is evenly divided between the Sheriff's Office and the District Attorney's office, which make up the task force.

The United Nations says human trafficking is a $32 billion business worldwide. The Bay Area is one of the top 13 places in the U.S. for human trafficking.

The Santa Clara County Sheriff's website has a place to report human trafficking.

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