A task force that works to prevent crimes against children is seeing an increase in the number of sex trafficking cases in Kansas at this halfway point of 2017 compared to last year.
The Kansas Internet Crimes Against Children (ICAC) Task Force investigates all exploitation, missing, human trafficking as well as physical and sexual abuse cases involving child victims.
Richard Powell of the Sedgwick County Sheriff’s office says so far this year, they’ve identified 43 victims and 29 suspects in domestic minor sex trafficking.
"The majority of these cases involve technology-facilitated prostitution," Powell says. "Additionally, we have not only seen the advertisement of these crimes across the internet, but the perpetrators are also utilizing a lot of social media to recruit victims."
Powell says there are more than 8000 registered sex offenders living in Kansas, and about 15 percent are in the greater Wichita and Sedgwick County area.
The task force works with 39 city, county, and tribal law enforcement agencies across the state.
Sedgwick County commissioners last week approved a $285,000 grant from the U.S. Department of Justice to continue the task force.
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