The nexus between illicit massage parlors and human trafficking can be difficult to see if you don’t know how to recognize the signs. The unfortunate truth is that a majority of what appear to be legitimate businesses are actually not what they advertise.
The complexity of this type of human trafficking is a hybrid of crimes including sex trafficking, labor trafficking, conspiracy, immigration fraud, and money laundering.
So how can you tell if a massage parlor is trafficking or taking part in modern slavery?
The following signs of human trafficking in massage parlors are not all-encompassing, but there are many indicators that can help identify whether a massage parlor is potentially facilitating human trafficking.
Here are some of the signs of human trafficking in massage parlors:
1. Any sexual or erotic services are provided, or they advertise on illicit websites
2. The providers are wearing very little clothing
3. They refuse to service females
4. You have to buzz in to get into the business
5. The providers are not allowed to handle their own cash
6. The providers speak very little to no English
7. The providers/employees are living in the parlor
8. The windows are completely covered or blacked out
9. The providers are transported to and from the parlor together and live in the same location
10. Providers are there for short periods of time, and new providers show up weekly or monthly
These are some of the most common signs of human trafficking in massage parlors, but there could be others that indicate that a massage parlor is not running a legitimate business.
2021 Mass Killings in Three Atlanta Massage Parlors Drive Attention to Sex Work & Exploitation
As if the human trafficking that occurs in massage parlors wasn’t horrific enough, homicide joined the growing list of atrocities, as 8 people across three different massage parlors were murdered in Atlanta, Georgia in March 2021.
A 21-year-old man, Robert Aaron Long, was charged with the shootings a day after the incident at the end of a police chase. The motive of the crime still remains unclear. However, since six of the eight victims were women of Asian descent, it was initially suspected as a hate crime against the Asian-American community that started with the global pandemic last year.
Long later told police that he was a customer at two of the massage parlors he targeted and saw them all as places of temptation. Regardless of the motivation, it was no doubt a horrific act that took the lives of several innocent women.
While it hasn’t been publicly confirmed as to whether the targeted massage parlors were involved in human trafficking, the incident has raised concerns about possible sexual exploitation and sex trafficking. It serves as an urgent reminder to fortify our fight against the gravely disturbing issue of slavery in illicit massage parlors.
How You Can Help
DeliverFund is committed to equipping, training, and advising law enforcement to take down the evil that perpetuates human slavery within the illicit massage parlor network.
DeliverFund has infiltrated their networks, and we are actively supporting local and federal law enforcement in the development and identification of illicit massage parlor and trafficking networks, their actors, and the locations in which victims are being held against their will from coast to coast.
You too can contribute to the cause by donating to DeliverFund. Any support you provide will strengthen the fight against human traffickers and illicit massage parlors.