AOPC: Lancaster Co. has the most trafficking crimes in the state

HARRISBURG, Pa. (WHTM) — The Association of Pennsylvania Courts (AOPC) has released new data on human trafficking in the Commonwealth, highlighting areas across the state where the numbers show the crime is most prominent.

According to AOPCLancaster County has the highest number of human trafficking offenses filed from 2017 to 2021. In May 2022, Lancaster District Attorney Heather Adams said major highways and hotels – which can facilitate the transportation and recruitment of victims – are partly to blame.

Although the Pennsylvania State Police didn’t specifically speak to Lancaster County’s statistics, they repeated Adams’ claim on a Thursday press conference to combat human trafficking.

“We see a lot of criminal activity related to many of the freeways that run through Pennsylvania and from city to city,” said Lt. Adam Reed, director of the Pennsylvania State Police Office of Communications. “These highways allow for a very fast connection and a direct route.”

Since 2007, the National Human Trafficking Hotline has received more than 7,700 reports in Pennsylvania alone.

“These figures only underscore how much concerned citizens can do if they know what to do, what to look for and who to turn to,” said PENNDOT Transport Minister Yassmin Gramian.

According to the Wolf administration, potential warning signs of human trafficking could include:

  • lack of knowledge of a person’s community or whereabouts;
  • restricted or controlled communication where people cannot speak for themselves;
  • Individuals who have no control over their own identity documents; or
  • Branding or tattooing of a trafficker’s name (often on the neck).

Anyone who suspects human trafficking or human trafficking is urged to call the National Human Trafficking Hotline at 1-888-373-7888. AOPC: Lancaster Co. has the most trafficking crimes in the state

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