The Real Face of Human Trafficking: How to Identify Human Trafficking in the Field

The Real Face of Human Trafficking: How to Identify Human Trafficking in the Field
Duration: 60 Minutes
Module 1Module 1
Recorded on: 2023-07-20
Unit 1Presentation Materials: The Real Face of Human Trafficking: How to Identify Human Trafficking in the Field
Unit 2Transcript: The Real Face of Human Trafficking: How to Identify Human Trafficking in the Field
Unit 3Workbook: The Real Face of Human Trafficking: How to Identify Human Trafficking in the Field
Unit 4Recording: The Real Face of Human Trafficking: How to Identify Human Trafficking in the Field

US law enforcement faces challenges in identifying and recognizing human trafficking due to inadequate and outdated training, as well as staffing shortages. With an estimated 400,000 human trafficking victims in the US, this webinar highlights the need for improved understanding and awareness of human trafficking among law enforcement.

Leading the discussion are Jeff Bolettieri and Bill Loucks. Jeff is an investigator for Hope for Justice, an international non-profit organization working to bring an end to human trafficking. Jeff served 27 years as a Deputy Sheriff in New York and 16 years with the DEA. Bill is the North Carolina senior investigator for Hope For Justice. He previously served as a gang and narcotics detective at the Metro Nashville Tennessee Police Department.

Specifics of the session include:

  • An overview of Hope For Justice – the services they provide and the entities they partner with in their work to end human trafficking.
  • How the lack of human trafficking training can lead to victims going unrecognized and traffickers not being held accountable.
  • A rundown of the factors that makes an individual vulnerable to trafficking.
  • How traffickers use narcotics to groom and control victims by creating dependencies and isolating them from friends and family.
  • How Transnational Criminal Organizations (TCOs) a.k.a. cartels prey on migrants by smuggling them into the US which can turn into human trafficking when victims are forced into indentured servitude.
  • How combining drug trafficking with human smuggling and trafficking allows cartels to expand their profits without the need to increase their labor force.
  • The growth of human trafficking attributed to its clandestine nature, victimization mentality, high profit, low risk of getting caught, and lack of understanding within the legal system.
  • Case examples demonstrating how human trafficking can be missed due to law enforcement’s lack of specialized training.
  • Differentiating prostitution from sex trafficking based on specific characteristics and behavior of the individual engaged in sex work.
  • How long it typically takes to work on a human trafficking case, its frequency and rate of conviction, and prosecution on the federal level.
  • The apparent lack of training on human trafficking across the criminal justice field from law enforcement and prosecutors to judges.
  • The multi-state nexus quality of human trafficking cases.
  • The investigative and non-investigative assistance options available to law enforcement when working on human trafficking cases.

Questions from the webinar audience are about:

  • Assistance from Hope for Justice for tribal reservations and outside of the US.
  • The presence of special units dedicated to human trafficking in major cities.
  • Identifying male sex and human trafficking victims.
  • How migrant teens are tricked into victimization once in the US already.
  • The trade headquarters in Flushing, New York



Other Webinars with these Presenters


Click here to view and register for other upcoming Law Enforcement webinars on the JCH Platform.


Resources and Handouts


Audience Comments

  • “The extensive scope of the human trafficking problem; and the link that narcotics and other substances play in the problem.” — William
  • “Understanding the power dynamic between traffickers and victims. As well as the situational awareness needed to recognize a victim in human trafficking.” — Bosco
  • “It was an awesome and enlightening training. I appreciate all the helpful information. I believe we should all be more educated in this subject.” — Diana
  • “It was all good. Being reminded that the people who are being trafficked are viewed as “things” or “property” and not people, is very heartbreaking, but important for all to know/remember. … Thank you for sharing your knowledge and experience.” — Diana
  • “The training was very simple and clear and I liked that it was an hour long. I felt like I got a lot from it. Thank you! Super useful.” — Lisa
  • “The personal knowledge of your speakers, The transparency in stating they too were deceived and missed an opportunity. As a victim advocate, I am sure I have missed a few. Thank you, it was amazing.” — Mildred
  • Very useful current stats and things we sometimes may overlook.” — Anna
  • All of the information was valuable, I used to work in foster care and recently made the switch to probation. This will be helpful to identify people in need of assistance.” — Sydney
  • “I am a sexual assault victim advocate. We have had an influx of trafficking victims so I hoped to better understand the law enforcement side and I do now. I appreciated when the speaker talked about how he missed signs of trafficking in past cases and what should have stood out. I also found it helpful to understand why trafficking is so difficult to spot and prosecute. I feel I can help my clients speak up about how they were coerced or fraudulently compelled into sex trafficking and this can empower them.” — Samantha
  • “I am a Probation Support technician. The information received is great for anyone, people in the community to be aware of or to be informed about. I like that laypersons have the opportunity to learn and be trained on this information from their workplace. And if the need arises, be able to help Social Services/Law enforcement to help or assist with this crime/social dilemma.” — Christina
  • “We have been trying to educate our community on human trafficking and have an upcoming presentation. Learning additional information such as signs the average person can look out for is greatly helpful in teaching people how they could potentially do their part to aid in the fight against trafficking.” — Jade
  • “I loved the presenters and the flow of the webinar. As I listened, I thought this was so much more than a textbook. Then I realized what the name of the webinar was…I felt that. Loved his vulnerability in his honesty and ignorance on the topic prior to learning more. Great webinar!” — Jessica
  • “This was a great training. All the information was valuable. Real-life examples and admission of past errors due to lack of training were key parts that make your training unique. Thank you for answering my question at the end of this session. I am interested to learn more about how people are targeted and recruited online for trafficking.” — Alyssa
  • “I’ve attended other training on this topic, but they provided new information regarding what law enforcement or others may encounter to signal sex trafficking is occurring that I have not previously heard. Such an important topic, we have added it to our certification academy for new juvenile probation officers. Thank You!!” — Deneen




This webinar is part of the JCH Summer School Program. From June 1-August 31, 2023, attendees will receive a certificate of attendance via email about one hour after the conclusion of a webinar.

Want to join us for other Summer School webinars? Check out our Summer School Calendar and register today!



Additional Resources
2 months ago
Thoughts about Human Trafficking from Bill Loucks
Bill Loucks and Jeff Bolettieri shared a lot of important information during their webinar, The Real […]
9 months ago
After the Webinar: The Real Face of Human Trafficking. Q&A with the Presenters
Webinar Presenters Jeff Bolettieri and Bill Loucks answered a number of your questions after their p […]
3 years ago
Local Strategies To Combat the Global Problem of Human Trafficking
Human trafficking is a global problem that generates billions of dollars in profit. Commonly miscons […]
5 years ago
Developing Your Labor Trafficking Threat Assessment
Issues in immigration arise due to instances of labor trafficking – a modern form of slavery where […]
5 years ago
Combating Labor Trafficking: An Interview with Colleen Owens
When you hear the phrase "human trafficking," what immediately comes to your mind? If you're like […]
7 years ago
Protecting the Victims of Domestic Minor Sex Trafficking
Efforts to protect children identified as victims of domestic sex trafficking have gained momentum a […]