Inside look: Tucson Police Department's Human Trafficking Unit

TUCSON, Ariz. - Tucson Police Department's Human Sex Trafficking Unit is on the hunt to take sex traffickers off the streets. After months spent working on one case, they let KGUN 9 in on a top-secret operation.

"This guy Amadi is our primary offender," said Sgt. Benjamin Frie, who runs the unit. "He has a history of meeting underage women on phone apps and what he does is he gets the young women to have sex with adult men."

He says a mother reached out believing her daughter had been trafficked after meeting this man online. 

"You get online, and you are swimming with the sharks," he said. "So she was playing around with these internet apps that you know she kind of came in contact with our primary suspect, and you know these guys are pretty slick."

Sgt. Frie says chats typically begin with innocent photos.

"It kind of got serious real quick and the next thing you know this guy is arranging for adult men to sleep with them... a juvenile," he said. 

Sgt. Frie says some women are deep in the relationship, they don't realize they are being pimped. He adds that men will often manipulate girls and women by buying them clothes, food, and drugs.

"It's just you and me," he said. "I am willing to do this for you but what are you willing to do for me."

Sgt. Frie says a bulk of the trade is online because it is more convenient for sex buyers to schedule when they want it. He sees women and men of all ages in Tucson being trafficked but primarily women in their teens to late 20's.

"The sad thing about it the amount of money these men make off these women," he said. "It can be absolutely staggering."

When the unit goes on a surveillance mission if they lose the suspect, then they will have to start all over another day. 

"These are dangerous dudes that we need to get off the streets, and we are here to pursue them and put them in jail where they belong."


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