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Dateline NBC in USA Spotlights the Sex Trade in the US and Southeast Asia

August 10, 2007

Dateline NBC's Chris Hansen reports on three stories of human trafficking spanning from the United States to Southeast Asia.

First story: Lannie was a girl preyed on by human traffickers. But she had one thing going for her: two men who would stop at nothing to get her back.

October 5, 2006. "Troop" Edmonds and his Philippine-born wife, Ravina, are at home in Oregon when they receive a panicked call from overseas.

Troop Edmonds: I’m sitting there. I'm trying to watch a football game. And all of a sudden my wife's cell phone rings. My wife gets really upset.

On the other end on the line is their 22-year-old Filipino niece, Lannie Ejercito

Troop Edmonds: She was scared. Crying. And in total desperation.

Chris Hansen: And what did she say?

Troop Edmonds:”Get me out of here!”

And then someone on the other end takes the phone away from Lannie.

Troop Edmonds: She said -- if you want your niece back, you have to send us $1,200 and we'll give you a back account to send it to. And she hung up.

Chris Hansen: They wanted the money wired to this bank account. And did this strike you as a ransom demand?

Troop Edmonds: Yes.

By: Adam Ciralsky and Chris Hansen, Dateline NBC. 9 August 2007. This story aired on 8 August 2007.

Second story: New developments in the hidden camera investigation exposing a child sexual slavery ring in Cambodia.

Phnom Penh - The moment we stepped outside our hotel in the Cambodian capital, Phnom Penh, we were greeted with this offer.

Driver: Many, many, many girls.

Dateline: Many girls?

Driver: Yes.

Dateline: How young?

Driver: Young, maybe, uh,... 12.

Twelve year olds for sale? Sounds shocking, but when we arrived in this village called Svay Pak, we met a young pimp selling even younger girls.

Po: New girls, too much for you.

How young?

Po: Eight, eight.

Along with a human rights investigator, we followed the pimp through the village alleys into a room filled with kids.

By: Chris Hansen, Dateline NBC. 8 August 2007. This story aired on 8 August 2007.


Third story: After going to Malaysia for a job as a waitress, 'Anna' was trapped against her will and forced into prostitution.

"Anna," who has asked that we disguise her identity, was trafficked to Malaysia from her home in the Philippines in early 2007.

Promised a job as a waitress, she arrived to find her traffickers had something very different in mind.

Anna: My manager told us we will work as a prostitute … I go there, I'm still virgin. I tell my friend I don't want this work because I cannot give myself to anybody ... My boss tell me I sign contract, I cannot go back Philippines. 

By: Adam Ciralsky and Chris Hansen, Dateline NBC. 8 August 2007.


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