Why We Exist
Sex-Trafficking in North Dakota

In the state of North Dakota, the Century Code defines "sex-trafficking" as "the promotion, recruitment, transportation, transfer, harboring, enticement, provision, obtaining, or receipt of a person by any means." It has only been recently, 2009, that human-trafficking has been considered a crime in North Dakota and as of June 18th, 2013 ND U.S. Attorney, recognized human-trafficking as a crime affecting reservations in North Dakota. This is happening simultaneously with an increased awareness throughout the entire country, especially among the church.

In response, several concerned Fargo area Christians have come together in order to fight the evil of sex-trafficking in North Dakota. "Voice for the Captives" is a group in the process of becoming a non-profit in order to bring Christians together to abolish sex-trafficking through the love and power of Jesus Christ. We believe it is only through Him that true healing and justice can come.

While there are currently no statistics in North Dakota to show the extent of sex-trafficking, here are just a few recent news stories to highlight the issue.

  • July 2013, a Bismark man was charged with attempted human trafficking of a minor.
  • June 2013, two men were arrested in Bismark for human trafficking, one being the sports editor for a respected news outlet.
  • October 2012, a man from Williams county was charged with human trafficking a 17-year old. He promised to help her find a job but instead tried to sell her with semi-nude photos on Craigslist.
  • August 2012, a retired high school counselor was charged with hiring a minor to engage in sexual acts in Grand Forks. He pleaded guilty and was convicted of 3 misdemeanors.
  • August 2012, two men and one woman in Grand Forks were charged with human trafficking a minor. One has been convicted of a felony, one is waiting trial and one was convicted of a misdemeanor for criminal facilitation.
  • September 2010, a man was arrested in Fargo for human trafficking. This was the largest case in U.S. history. He lured labors from Thailand to the U.S. forcing them to work. He was living on a farm with his wife in Hope, ND and was convicted of this crime.
North Dakota Policy Analysis
Shared Hope International
Rating In Place / Positive Aspect Missing / Negative Aspect
Criminalization of Domestic Minor Sex Trafficking 75% Human trafficking (HT) law addresses sex trafficking & clearly defines minors as victims. Commercial Sexual Exploitation of Children (CSEC) statutes and prostitution statutes do not refer to the human trafficking statute.
Criminal Provisions for Addressing the Demand 66% HT law follows federal law & could be applied to buyers & they may be required to register as sex offenders. No CSEC laws includes buying sex with a minor & there is no statute with heightened penalties for buyers.
Criminal Provisions for Traffickers 97% Traffickers could receive a penalty as high as a federal offense (AA felony), restitution may be required. Parental rights are not terminated for a sex trafficking offense.
Protective Provisions for the Child Victims 38% Victims may be protected if they are found to be abused / neglected by the person responsible for their welfare, this person could be the trafficker. Prostitution charges could be placed on minors, their juvenile deliquency record could be kept for 10 years, there is a lack of services & there is no safe harbor law.
Criminal Provisions for Facilitators 70% Class C felony & may be required to pay restitution. Child pornography offenses could be enhanced & no law addresses sex tourism.
Criminal Justice Tools for Investigation and Prosecutions 50% Wiretapping and internet may be used for investigation. There is no mandated training and there is no authorization of using decoys in investigation.

Current North Dakota Policy Rating: 64%

Action Plan

Prayer Pray for the hearts of the victims, the buyers, and the sellers - that through the power and love of Jesus Christ there will no longer be a demand for the "sex industry".
Awareness Bring education, training, and awareness events to our community.
Seek Justice Strengthen North Dakota law in order to effectively protect victims and prosecute traffickers and buyers.
Unite Unite Christians in order to effectively minister to those who are either being trafficked or to those who are fueling the demand.
Heal Work towards bringing healing to the victims, those behind the demand, and all of those affected by the sex-trafficking industry.
Education
Why implement Chosen in North Dakota Schools?
Traffickers are targeting children and every child attends school. Teachers educate our children and see them every day. By implementing training and trafficking education in schools, it is the most effective way to prevent human trafficking by equipping teachers and students.
  • Affordable: The "Chosen" material can be duplicated as many times as needed. The original copy has already been purchased. The only cost involved would be paper and blank DVD's.
  • Easy: Anyone can be trained to be a discussion leader.
  • Time: Chosen can be as short as a 30 minute lesson or as long as 90 minutes depending on how much material is used. The documentary is only 20 minutes. Time is precious and this issue is important so the most crucial information is shared in a short time.
  • Relevant: The information shared is U.S. specific and focuses on minors. In the documentary two young girls share their story which appeals to teenagers. After going through the lesson teens will know what trafficking looks like and will know how to report and respond correctly.
  • Plentiful Resources: There are preparation guides for presenters, a letter to school counselors, terminology guides, discussion guides (for different audiences), power point presentations, and opportunities for more in depth training or continued education.