First Arrest for Sex Trafficking in Key West
According to the Florida Coalition Against Human Trafficking, Florida has been identified as a hub for this abhorrent illegal activity. Florida has been cited as having the one of the highest rates of human trafficking
activity in the country. According to the FCAHT website, there are
approximately 27 million people in the world enslaved by the human trafficking trade. About 2.5 million of those people live here in the United States. While Florida has a very high rate of trafficking activity, Key West has not been on the radar. Now, a Key West man has been arrested for sex trafficking, putting Key West in the spotlight.
Sex Trafficking in Key West
Key West brings a huge influx of tourism and vacationers to Florida throughout the year. With constant activity and being highlighted as dream vacation spot, it is difficult to comprehend how this amazing group of islands may also have a dark side. Authorities in the Florida Keys say they’ve charged a man with sex trafficking, making it the first such arrest in Monroe County.
Sheriff’s Office spokeswoman Becky Herrin says Derrick Wilson of Key West was arrested Saturday for allegedly coercing a North Carolina woman into having sex for money. Herrin says the woman told detectives she came to the Keys in February with her boyfriend. Wilson allegedly offered the woman a place to stay, drugs, and work at a strip club, all in exchange for money she earned from sexual encounters he arranged for her. Herrin says Wilson threatened to beat the woman if she didn’t make money for him.
Human trafficking charges can be punished by life imprisonment.
Human Trafficking Hotline
If you suspect a human trafficking case, call the Human Trafficking Resource Hotline at 561.880.4300. You can report potential human trafficking cases using this phone number and you can also ask for information about any local organization you can join to help stop the epidemic of sex trafficking.