COLONIE, NY (NEWS10) — A Colonie man has been indicted on slew of charges involving allegations of human trafficking and prostitution. Some of the victims are said to be minors.
Federal prosecutors allege that Christopher Thomas of Colonie, New York trafficked adults as well as minors for prostitution in motels in the Capital region and Massachusetts.
In a statement the U.S. Attorney’s office said that “Thomas is alleged to have recruited girls and women to engage in commercial sex at his direction and then provide him with the proceeds.”
Prosecutors allege that Thomas used a website to advertise the girls and women for commercial sex in the Capital Region, Massachusetts, and elsewhere.
“What were seeing here at least in the Capital are local home grown youth,” said John Kelly, Coordinator for Safe Harbour in Saratoga County/ Kelly helps identify and assist young people who are being trafficked or sexually exploited.
“These are vulnerable people. Usually starts off for attention love and things like that and these folks come along and they exploit that,” he said.
Kelly says very often the victims of sex trafficking don’t see themselves as victims until supportive intervention happens.
“And once they are in they don’t know how to get out and it’s like, ‘Well, I got to keep doing this because everyone else has washed their hands of me and now I am stuck with this.’”
As for Thomas, he’s been in custody in the Albany County Jail since his May 2020 arrest.
But according to police that didn’t stop him from running his alleged criminal enterprise.
Thomas has also been accused of running a prostitution ring while behind bars.
He faces 10 years to life in prison if convicted of the charges in the federal indictment which include: sex trafficking of a child.
There is help out there.
If you or someone you know needs help getting out of a trafficking situation you can call the National Human Trafficking Hotline: (888) 373-7888.
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