Stories

We helped rescue 42 people from a rock quarry in 2010. Half were children. This photo was taken on the day they were set free. Last week, the slave owner was convicted for his crimes.
BANGALORE, INDIA – Last week, after a nearly four-year trial, a slave owner was convicted and sentenced to a total of seven years in prison. That’s the longest sentence ever recorded for holding slaves in India.
Brigitte, on the left, with Baraka, IJM Rwanda Director of Aftercare
KIGALI, RWANDA – Brigitte takes a deep breath and smiles as she speaks. Always warm and quick to laugh, it’s clear she loves what she does. As a social worker with IJM Rwanda, Brigitte helps children and their families process trauma and find restoration after sexual violence.
Angelita, in the green shirt, and the other girls rescued with her spend their first days in freedom at HerSpace, a government shelter for survivors of sex trafficking.
Two years ago, Angelita* was rescued from a karaoke bar where she had been trafficked and sold for sex at just 14 years old.
Iris, now 17 years old, holds her daughter at the zoo. IJM organized a “Day of Joy” in January 2014 for girls who are survivors of sexual violence and are receiving care from our social workers.
GUATEMALA CITY – When Iris* speaks about her daughter, she can’t help but smile with pride. At 17 years old, Iris is a young mother.
A police officer leads a father and son into freedom. The father was enslaved for 16 years weaving mats. His son had no reason to expect a different future.
CHENNAI, INDIA – Ragesh had worked for the same man for sixteen years. He wove long, dried grass into colorful mats, much of the work done by hand. When he got married seven years ago, his wife joined him in the small business. But this couple was not employed; they were enslaved.
Libby* was raped by a distant relative and suffered in silence until her mother learned she was pregnant.
NAIROBI, KENYA – Libby’s* life was upended when an older relative sexually assaulted her in their impoverished Kenyan community. Though he tried to cover up the attack, Libby bravely testified against him and kept the baby born from the abuse.
NAIROBI, KENYA – In one terrifying day, Anthony and Silas were snatched from their daily lives and thrown into a crowded Kenya prison—a nightmare they would share for the next two and a half years. Their only crime: being in the wrong place at the wrong time.
IJM Manila has been working on this case since 2008.
MANILA, PHILIPPINES – Yesterday, a man was sentenced to 40 years in prison and convicted for raping his daughter, Marikit.* IJM has been working on this case since 2008, and IJM Manila attorney Ralph Catedral was grateful to make the phone call to tell Marikit and her mother the news.
LA PAZ, BOLIVIA – A year after a man broke into his neighbors' home and sexually assaulted 6-year-old Vivi* and her 8-year-old sister, Mery*, he pled guilty and confessed to the violent crime. He was sentenced to a decade in prison in a plea bargain settled on March 7, 2014.
Global media have reported on this case of stunning violence and sexual abuse over the past eight years. Cambodia's leading newspaper, The Phonm Penh Post, reports on the news of Pepe's sentence after a multi-year legal battle.
PHNOM PENH, CAMBODIA — Eight years after retired U.S. Marine Michael Pepe was arrested and charged for systematically and sadistically abusing young children in Cambodia, he has been found guilty and sentenced to 210 years in prison.

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