The National Human Trafficking Hotline marked 7,621 cases of reported human trafficking in 2016. One of the stories involves the daughter of Maureen and David. She disappeared with a friend in January.
Three weeks later, the couple contacted Saved in America (SIAM). It’s a volunteer group of US Navy Seals, police detectives, and other specialists. It took a week before SIAM located and rescued the 16-year old from the sex-trafficking ring. Yes, the poor girl was sold to a sex trafficking ring.
Members of this San Diego-based group were experts in investigation, surveillance and police collaboration. These people have assisted in 57 successful child recoveries over three years as confirmed by the SIAM website. The group also helps rescued juveniles receive proper treatment and rehabilitation.
The National Center for Missing and Exploited Children reports that 20 percent of runaways reported are actually sex trafficking victims.
Law enforcement officials appreciate the help, and SIAM members are glad to have such a big role. They have joined forces to make this world a better place to live in, and they are also doing their best to improve the life of victims, says Mike Williams, a sheriff from Duval County, Fla.
San Diego County Chief Deputy District Attorney Summer Stephan praised private groups like Saved. According to him, they are really helpful, because victims sometimes don’t trust police officers.
Stephan also said that private investigators don’t have police powers, but they do help law enforcement. Police officers get useful information, and many cases have a happy ending.
Joseph Travers is a chaplain and private investigator. He came up with the idea of founding SIAM after the 2009 abduction and death of Brittanee Drexel.
Travers was well aware of the fact that street gangs, prison gangs and cartels had taken over drug trafficking in the 1980s. Sex trafficking was next on their list. When Travers read about Drexel’s story, he knew it was a gang thing.
Travers had met with many parents. Most of them were unhappy with the inability of law enforcement to track down victims. Parents panic, and all they want to hear is an information about their kids. Some parents are forced to look for their children on their own, and that’s when Travers’ team steps in.
Travers’ son, Joshua, is a former US Marine who is now SIAM’s Chief of Case Management. Joshua explained that these abductions take place in someone’s backyard without landlords being aware of that.
People disappear in the streets in broad daylight. Children disappear without a trace. It could be your child, your friend’s child or pretty much any other innocent kid. It’s time to stop it.
Travers promised to help anyone in need. They are here for all the parents who have lost a child. It doesn’t mean that these kids come from poor families. They all need help.
The world has become a dangerous place. Thousands of children disappear every day, and police officers need help. Hopefully, SIAM will encourage the foundation of other similar groups.
There are so many kids out there, and only God knows what happens to them. Let’s change this, and make our neighborhood safe again.