Indiana panel hears testimony on human trafficking

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INDIANAPOLIS A state trooper who tracks human trafficking cases has told an Indiana commission that he's investigated nearly 40 cases so far this year but the full scope of the sex and labor trade in the state remains elusive.

Trooper Skyler Whittington told the Commission on Improving the Status of Children on Wednesday that he was recently involved in an undercover operation that ended with the rescue of three juvenile girls targeted by human traffickers. One of the girls was hours from being forced into prostitution.

Deputy Attorney General Abigail Kuzma told the commission that since 2006 there have been 134 human trafficking cases identified by Indiana law enforcement agencies and another 123 cases uncovered by victim service providers. Many of those cases involved juveniles.