By Evan Bleier / April 23, 2019

Law Enforcement Warns of Sex Trafficking Before Kentucky Derby

The field heads toward the first turn during the 144th running of the Kentucky Derby. (Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images)
The field heads toward the first turn during the 144th running of the Kentucky Derby. (Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images)

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Ahead of the 145th running of the Kentucky Derby at Churchill Downs in Louisville on May 4, state law enforcement officials are calling for heightened awareness of human trafficking in the days surrounding the race.

Kentucky Attorney General Andy Beshear and Jefferson County Attorney Mike O’Connell appeared in Louisville earlier this week with groups that assist victims of sex trafficking victims to raise awareness about the illegal activity.

To help victims, the attorney general’s office also created a poster to help identify the signs of human trafficking that also offers information about how to report the crime.

Commons signs of trafficking include individuals who have identical tattoos or branding, are unable to identify what town or state they are in or where they are staying and appear to be malnourished or have physical injuries. Possessing multiple pre-paid credit cards is also a sign.

At last year’s Derby, seven men were arrested and two others were cited for sex trafficking-related offenses.

Before large sporting events like the Derby and the Super Bowl, incidents of human trafficking commonly increase in the host city. That can include bringing in victims from other states.

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