Juvenile Trafficking in Springfield

Posted: October 28, 2011 in Uncategorized






An MS-13 gang member named Rances Ulices Amaya was arrested this week in Springfield, VA, my part of town, for prostituting several juvenile runaway girls. See this FBI Press Release for details. Interestingly, I also read somewhere that the girls themselves are being charged with prostitution. If true one questions how the government can do this and simultaneously charge Mr. Amaya with sex trafficking of a minor. Of course, while Mr. Amaya is being charged by the Federal government, the girls are presumably being charged by the Commonwealth of Virginia. In any case, the reason for the apparent contradiction likely lies in the intentions and level of willingness of the juvenile girls.  This may be hard to prove, but that’s probably what it will come down to in any criminal proceedings against the girls.  Hopefully theirs isn’t another case of government treating victims of human trafficking as criminal perpetrators.  These events are literally close to home for me, so I’ll be following the cases against Mr. Amaya and the girls closely.

  1. Paola says:

    Wow Craig, that’s pretty crazy. Or actually is it? I grew up in West Springfield, and recently moved back to the area, and its crazy how things change–the problems we have in the neighborhood today versus when I was a kid in high school. I’ve heard a lot about MS 13 gang members in the Fairfax County area but always wanted to believe it wasn’t in my own backyard even though I knew it was.
    More importantly I too am curious to see how the charges against the girls as well as the suspect turn out. Thanks for sharing!

  2. Mills says:

    It’s also possible that the girls are being charged as a form of leverage. It is notoriously difficult to get people to testify against gangs like MS-13, for obvious reasons, and so it’s possible that the girls have been charged as a way of “encouraging” them to testify.

  3. ron says:

    Thanks for this interesting story, Craig. I heard today that this guy (??) got 24 years in prison for sex trafficking runaway teenage girls. The story doesn’t mention the girls being charged with any crimes, so maybe Mills is correct in that the girls were encouraged to testify. At any rate, what a relief that this guy is gone for a long time and that these crimes are making headlines so that they can be prosecuted and put to a stop.

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