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Illegal Girls Get Raped, Pregnant Fleeing ‘Sex Trafficking’

From the Christian Science Monitor:

For some migrant girls, rape and pregnancy are part of the journey

By Lourdes Medrano | August 6, 2014

Although teenage boys make up the bulk of Central American children traveling alone to the United States, girls increasingly are venturing north, too. And for some of them, the risky journey becomes even more difficult because of a pregnancy.

In some cases, girls are raped during their perilous trek. In other cases, sexual assault occurs before they leave, and that’s why they’re fleeing their home country… Some of the girls, in fact, learn they are pregnant while undergoing medical screenings in US custody.

So these illegal alien girls are handing themselves over to sex traffickers in order to get to the US. And often, once they are here, they are turned over to ‘guardians,’ who often turn out to be sex traffickers. (In fact, we’re told later in this article that the biggest problem in Guatemala is incest.) — So what exactly are they escaping by making the trek to the US?

About 35 percent of the 53,973 minors placed with the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) since Oct. 1 are girls, according to that agency, which is tasked with providing care for the unaccompanied minors…

The photographs from the processing centers do not support this figure.

While unaccompanied minors trying to cross the US-Mexico border often confront physical and emotional trauma along the way, girls can be particularly vulnerable to sexual violence by individuals and criminal organizations.

Oftentimes, such violence happens before the girls head north, says Ms. Podkul, who has represented minors in court and interviewed many for a report on migrant children arriving in the US. "There’s everything from stories of incest to rape by gang members," she says. "Rape is being used as a tool by these gangs to exert control."

In Guatemala alone, thousands of adolescents are sexually abused each year, mostly by relatives, according to human rights groups in that country.

So what are we doing? We are turning them over to their family members who are already living here in the US.

Others become victims on their way to the US. Podkul remembers the case of a 15-year-old Guatemalan who was held captive in Mexico for several months by a drug trafficker. "She had to stay in his safehouse and have sex with him whenever he wanted to," she says

According to Podkul, a guard at the house eventually took pity on the girl and allowed her to continue her US-bound trip. She ended up in detention, and there, the teen found out she was pregnant…

Once again, what are they fleeing exactly?

This article was posted by Steve Gilbert on Thursday, August 7th, 2014. Comments are currently closed.

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