Brooke Binkowski
February 26, 2014

A 19-year-old woman with a baby face covered in heavy makeup and a hestitant, toneless voice shares her experiences in the past year: an old friend asked her for help, again and again, until she agreed. He kidnapped her and forced her to work as a prostitute.

“During those seven months, I lived under threats, beatings, and… offenses.”

She means rape. “I had sex with twenty to twenty-five men a day,” she says.

Zuria (not her real name) managed to escape with the help of a friend and now lives in Tijuana, at La Casa del Jardin, a shelter for adolescent girls who have been victims of human trafficking. The girls, some of whom are only 13 or 14, stay there until they are legal adults.

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