Society's ChildS


Human Trafficking: Modern Day Slavery Affecting 30 Million Women and Children

stop human trafficking
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Most people think that slavery is a crime of the past. However, this notion couldn't be any further from the tragic reality of a well organized criminal activity which victimized more than 30 millions women and children worldwide. As matter of fact, there are more people being enslaved today than at any other time in human history.

There are two distinct facets of this modern slave trade: one concerns victims who are sold, bought and used as sex slaves, the other one pertains to people exploited for labor purpose. In this article we will only try to get a grasp on the global sex trade aspect of human trafficking.

Sex slavery is not limited to brothels is Thailand, Cambodia, the Philippines or the Dominican Republic. In countries where prostitution is legal, like Germany, traffickers, pimps and dangerous organized crime organizations such as the Russian mafia or ethnic Albanians are controlling most sex workers, even the ones who claim to be "independent".

According to recent estimates, there are currently around 200,000 children between the age of 12 to 15 who are sold for sex by pimps/traffickers every year in the United States. The problem is epidemic, and it often hides in plain sight.

Bizarro Earth

Punished For Not Crying: Thousands of North Koreans Face Labour Camps For Not Being Upset Enough About Death of Kim Jong-il

North Korea's hardline regime is punishing those who did not cry at the death of dictator Kim Jong-il, according to reports.

Sentences of at least six months in labour camps are also apparently being given to those who didn't go to the organised mourning events, while anyone who criticised the new leader Kim Jong-un is also being punished.

Those who tried to leave the country, or even made a mobile phone call out, were also being disciplined, it has been claimed.

Che Guevara

Kosovo Police Arrest 146 Protesters

© unknownSupporters of opposition party Self-Determination clash with Kosovo police in Podujevo, six kilometers from the Merdare border crossing that links Kosovo and Serbia, January 14, 2012.
Police in Kosovo have arrested at least 146 protesters following clashes with hundreds of Kosovo Albanians, who tried to blockade the border with neighboring Serbia.

Clashes erupted Saturday in the northern town of Podujevo, six kilometers (four miles) from the border with Serbia and near the main Merdare border crossing, leaving 50 people, including 31 police officers, injured.

Heavily-armed riot police fired tear gas and employed water cannons after the demonstrators blocked the road and ignored calls to disperse. Eventually, police managed to disperse the protesters and restore traffic on the road leading from the border to Pristina, the capital and largest city of Kosovo.

The opposition political party Self-Determination had announced that it would block the traffic from Serbia in order to bar Serb products from entering Kosovo.


French, Saudi Warplanes Collide in Saudi

Mirage Jet
© unknownA Mirage jet
A French Mirage and a Saudi F-15 collided in the kingdom's northern region of Tabuk without causing casualties, state news agency SPA quoted a military official as saying on Saturday.

"During a joint exercise on air engagement a French Mirage aircraft belonging to the French armed forces collided with a Saudi armed forces' F-15," said the statement.

"The Saudi pilot and the two French pilots ejected safely, and were taken to the Northern Sector Command. Investigations are under way to determine the circumstances of the incident," the official told SPA.

"Investigations are ongoing to uncover the circumstances surrounding the accident," it added.

Last May a Saudi F-15 crashed in the kingdom's east and its pilot was killed. The aircraft had been on a "training mission" in the Eastern Province when it came down, the news agency said at the time.

Source: Agence France-Presse


Bank of America Told Federal Reserve it Could Sell Branches in Emergency

Bank of America
© Bank of America
Bank of America Corp (BAC.N) told Federal Reserve officials in June that it could shed branches in some parts of the country if it needed to raise capital in an emergency, a person familiar with the matter said.

The proposal was part of a series of options provided to the Fed, including issuing a tracking stock for its Merrill Lynch operations. The fact that the bank proposed selling branches doesn't mean it's a desirable move or highly probable, the person said.

Bank of America Chief Executive Officer Brian Moynihan has been under pressure to raise capital to absorb mortgage-related losses and meet new international standards. The second largest U.S. bank received government bailouts during the financial crisis and emerged as one of weaker institutions in its aftermath.

Since June, Moynihan has taken a number of steps to boost capital levels, including selling nearly $15 billion in China Construction Bank Corp shares and swapping preferred shares for common stock. The bank has said a measure of capital against risk-weighted assets improved to at least 9.25 percent at the end of December, up from 8.65 percent at the end of September.

Heart - Black

Cambodia Police Find 5 Bodies in Frenchman's Car

© Agence France-PresseCambodian police examine a car as they try to retrieve the vehicle from a pond in Kampong Speu province.
Cambodian police on Saturday found five bodies, two of them stuffed in a suitcase, in a car belonging to a Frenchman who had been missing for months with his four children, officials said.

The gruesome discovery was made after the white 4x4 vehicle owned by widower Laurent Vallier, 42, was retrieved from a pond on his property in the southern province of Kampong Speu, said Chhay Sinarith, director of the interior ministry's internal security department.

"After removing the car from the pond, we found the remains of five people. We conclude that they are those of the missing French family," he told AFP.

"The bones of two kids were put in a suitcase that was also in the car," he said, adding that police were still investigating the cause of death for all five victims.


Captain Arrested Amid Growing Anger After Italian Cruise Ship Runs Aground

Francesco Schettino investigated for manslaughter and abandoning ship after three die and 41 unaccounted for

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The Italian captain of the ship that sank off the coast of Tuscany was detained by prosecutors as efforts continued to search for the missing.

Three people were confirmed to have died and 41 were still unaccounted for after the 114,000-tonne Costa Concordia smashed into rocks near the island of Giglio.

Authorities said that Francesco Schettino, 52, who has worked for the owners of the cruise liner for 11 years, was being investigated for manslaughter and abandoning his ship. Prosecutor Francesco Velusio was quoted as saying that the vessel "was mistakenly close" to the island on a route ordered by Schettino through well-mapped sea lanes.

There was speculation that a power failure on board the ship could have led to a loss of navigational control, sending it smashing into the rocks. Experts said that passengers reported a power blackout and a large blast, which may have indicated an explosion in the engine room.

Heart - Black

US, California: New San Francisco Sheriff Charged with Domestic Violence

© unknownJan. 13, 2012: San Francisco Sheriff Ross Mirkarimi walks away after speaking to reporters at City Hall in San Francisco.
San Francisco's new sheriff is vowing to fight domestic violence and other misdemeanor charges that prosecutors allege are related to a New Year's Eve incident with his wife.

Sheriff Ross Mirkarimi faces one count each of domestic violence battery, child endangerment and dissuading a witness, San Francisco District Attorney George Gascon said Friday.

Mirkarimi was booked at San Francisco County Jail, said San Francisco police Sgt. Michael Andraychak. He was released on $35,000 bail. A police mugshot showed Mirkarimi with his eyes closed.

The sheriff, 50, vowed to remain in office while he fights the charges. He told reporters outside his office Friday afternoon the he denies the allegations.

"The charges are very unfounded," he said calmly. "We will fight the charges."

"We are cooperating," he said.


US: Mall Shooting at Independence Center in Kansas City Metro, Two Injured

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Another mall shooting is starting to trickle out through the news from the Kansas City area. The mall shooting took place on January 14th, 2011 in the late afternoon. The mall was the Indepence Center shopping mall located in Independence, MO which is part of the Kansas City metro area.

The mall had been put in full lockdown as police attempted to find the suspect who has shot at least two people. A phone interview of a man live on the news revealed that most of the shooting happened in the end of the Independence Mall where Sears Deparment store is located.

Stores had started to pull down lock gates as the shooting took place. Some stores in the Independence, Missouri mall allowed customers to come in and stay in the back of the stores until things calmed down.

Personal accounts are mentioned at The Examiner reported by Kelly Evenson. The interview of three sisters revealed the girls heard three shots in the mall and they quicly returned into the CJ Banks store to take shelter as the store locked the customers down. The three sisters said that after the shots were heard shoppers were seen, "screaming and running like a herd of cattle."


US: Priest Gets 3 Years in Prison for Stealing from Church

© Jeff Scheid/Las Vegas Review-Journal St. Elizabeth Ann Seton Msgr. Kevin McAuliffe, left, outside the courthouse in Las Vegas.
Msgr. Kevin McAuliffe stole about $650,000 from his Las Vegas-area parish over nearly a decade to feed a gambling addiction. His parishioners had urged the judge to show mercy.

For years, Msgr. Kevin McAuliffe lived something of a double life.

He was widely admired by his flock at St. Elizabeth Ann Seton, which he helped build into one of the largest Roman Catholic parishes in the Las Vegas area. But at the same time, he was stealing money from the church.

Over nearly a decade, he pocketed about $650,000. His motive was all too familiar in Nevada. McAuliffe was a gambling addict.

On Friday, U.S. District Judge James C. Mahan judge waved off the defense's request to give McAuliffe probation. He sentenced the priest, who pleaded guilty to charges stemming from the thefts, to more than three years in prison and ordered him to pay restitution.

McAuliffe's attorney, Margaret Stanish, had asked the court to consider his lifelong devotion to the Catholic Church, which started with helping nuns when he was a schoolboy. McAuliffe has also been diagnosed with social anxiety disorder and depression, she said, but in recent months had "excelled" in gambling addiction treatment.