MBI Agents “JDSA” in Central Florida Human Trafficking Sting

From WFTV Orlando:

Nearly 30 people were arrested in Orange County over the weekend following an Metropolitan Bureau of Investigation  sting that targeted men who solicited women to work as prostitutes and men who tried to buy sex from them.

Agents told WFTV’s Kenneth Craig that they are constantly arresting prostitutes, but for the first time in more than a year they solely went after the johns, along with the customers, by using undercover decoys listing their services on online sex sites.

That switch in tactic is something one sex trade survivor said she’s been waiting for.

“Simple economics dictate that if you reduce the demand, that the supply will be reduced as well,” said Jesse Maley, an advocate to end sex trafficking in the community.

According to the MBI, last year their operations identified 32 victims of sex trafficking and in the process, they rescued four underage women.

“I do think that this is significant. I do think 29 is a very big number and I do think this sends a strong message to men who are looking to buy sex in our community,” Maley said.

Of the 29 arrests, MBI agents said Anthony Davis was their biggest catch.

They said Davis is a career criminal who switched from violent crime to the sex trafficking business.

“This is a very violent convicted felon with firearms charges in his past, burglary charges in his past,” said Lt. Michael Gibson, an MBI agent with the Orange County Sheriff’s Office.

Authorities said suspects like Davis have been known to beat, drug and force women into the sex trade.

“It shows the character of the kind of people who are forcing these females into prostitution,” Maley said. “Addressing this demand issue, this is a huge switch tactic and a very important one.”

MBI agents said the stings involving the johns are complicated and require a lot of agents.

World’s Richest 1% Control Half of Global Wealth

From NPR’s Scott Neuman

Just 1 percent of the world’s population controls nearly half of the planet’s wealth, according to a new study published by Oxfam ahead of the World Economic Forum’s annual meeting.

The study says this tiny slice of humanity controls $110 trillion, or 65 times the total wealth of the poorest 3.5 billion people.

Other key findings in the report:

— The world’s 85 richest people own as much as the poorest 50 percent of humanity.

— 70 percent of the world’s people live in a country where income inequality has increased in the past three decades.

— In the U.S., where the gap between rich and poor has grown at a faster rate than any other developed country, the top 1 percent captured 95 percent of post-recession growth (since 2009), while 90 percent of Americans became poorer.

“Oxfam is concerned that, left unchecked, the effects are potentially immutable, and will lead to ‘opportunity capture’ — in which the lowest tax rates, the best education, and the best healthcare are claimed by the children of the rich,” the relief agency writes. “This creates dynamic and mutually reinforcing cycles of advantage that are transmitted across generations.”

In other words, Oxfam says that if trends continue, the rich will get richer and the poor will get poorer.

“[People] are increasingly separated by economic and political power, inevitably heightening social tensions and increasing the risk of societal breakdown,” the report says.

The World Economic Forum is scheduled to hold its annual meeting in Davos-Klosters, Switzerland, beginning Jan. 22.

The Oxfam report largely mirrors findings of several other studies in recent years that have documented growing income inequality in the U.S. and across the globe.

In September, a University of California, Berkeley study found that the wealthiest 1 percent of Americans saw their incomes grow by 31.4 percent over the period 2009 to 2012, while the other 99 percent experienced just 0.4 percent growth. Last month, the Pew Research Center published a study that found income inequality in the U.S. was at its highest since 1928, the year before the start of the Great Depression.

Celebrating Women of 2013

Kudos to Microsoft and their new marketing campaign, “Honestly.”

The ad features Sara Bareilles’s song, “Brave” and highlights how people make decisions in technology as part of their everyday life.

Microsofts message:

“In reflecting upon the year, and with “Brave’s” message of empowerment, we were inspired to do something different. We want to draw attention to the bravery and courage of some women from the past year across diverse fields and perspectives. We believe that spotlighting a group of courageous women this year who spoke out, broke barriers, overcame tragedy and changed the world shows what the human spirit can achieve when set free – and can encourage more people to “say what you want to say.” They inspire all of us to find the best in ourselves and find our own form of bravery.”

Well, Microsoft…you certainly got our attention.

What better way to start 2014 by celebrating women from 2013! Women who decided to Just DO Something…Anything! and helped change the world in the process.

Happy New Year!
JDSA

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