The FBI and local law enforcement agencies recovered 16 minors and arrested 45 pimps and their associates in sex peddling associated with the Super Bowl, the FBI announced yesterday.
The minors ranged in age from 13 to 17 and included high school students and children who had been reported missing, the FBI said. More than 70 women and children were provided services and referrals to programs to help them, according to the agency.
Some of the human traffickers told law enforcement personnel they traveled to New Jersey from other states specifically to prostitute women and children at the Super Bowl, which attracted an estimated 83,000 attendees and even more fans and vendors, many of them men in a celebratory mood.
"High-profile special events, which draw large crowds, have become lucrative opportunities for child prostitution criminal enterprises," said Ron Hosko, assistant director of the FBI's Criminal Investigative Division. "The FBI and our partners remain committed to stopping this cycle of victimization and putting those who try to profit from this type of criminal activity behind bars."