In 1910, Congress passed the Mann Act which makes it a violation of federal law to transport an individual across state lines or to coerce an individual to travel across state lines for purposes of engaging in prostitution. Federal prosecutors use this law to punish those who engage in human trafficking. Human trafficking is a serious federal offense that has grave penalties.
If you are under investigation for human trafficking or have been charged with crimes relating to human trafficking, contact a DC federal human trafficking lawyer who can help you understand the legal options available. Choosing to work with a federal criminal defense attorney is a major decision, but it may ultimately help you to effectively protect yourself in court and during any legal negotiations.
The DC federal human trafficking attorneys at our firm are interested in learning more about the details of your case. Call our law offices today to schedule your free initial consultation.
Because the term “trafficking” implies movement, many human trafficking charges involve alleged movement across state or international borders. This is what allows for it to fall under federal jurisdiction. Because federal charges are prosecuted in federal court, it is important to understand the laws involved and to work with a DC federal human trafficking lawyer who has experience practicing in the federal court where your case will be heard.
There are international treaties intended to stop human trafficking, and the Trafficking Victims Protection Act (TVPA) was enacted in October of 2000. The TVPA is a comprehensive federal law which seeks to protect human trafficking victims. Congress reauthorized the TVPA in both 2003 and 2005.
The TVPA not only imposes harsh criminal penalties on those convicted of human trafficking, but it also makes human trafficking an offense that can be charged under the Racketeering Influenced Corrupt Organizations (RICO) statute.
The TPVA allows Courts to order defendants to pay restitution to victims of human trafficking victims and gives those victim’s the right to file civil charges against those accused of exploiting them, making it even more imperative that a DC federal human trafficking lawyer is contacted as soon as possible.
18 U.S.C. Section 1580 et seq. prohibits human trafficking and related offenses and outlines the various penalties for those convicted of forcing another to perform forced labor; possessing slaves aboard a vessel; transporting slaves from the United States; sex trafficking of children; and selling another person into involuntary servitude. Virtually every offense under this statute can result in decades of prison time or life in prison. For example:
These are just a few of many different federal human trafficking offenses that can lead to lengthy prison sentences for those convicted.
If you are accused of human trafficking, it is important to understand the legal options you have for responding to these charges. A DC federal human trafficking lawyer can try to negotiate with prosecutors to reach a plea bargain to a lesser offense or to try to convince them to dismiss the charges against you, depending on the facts of your particular case.
Your criminal defense attorney can also assist you in raising potential defenses to the charges against you, depending on the nature of your case. Human trafficking offenses have different possible defenses. Contact a DC federal human trafficking lawyer today to understand the options available to you for responding to and fighting these serious charges.