Beauty pageant silences contestant critical of Chinese human rights abuses

Working through a British-sponsored beauty pageant the Chinese government seems to have gone out of its way to silence this 26 year old who has been speaking out against China for its human rights record. From the New York Times:

“After the Chinese authorities blocked the Canadian beauty queen Anastasia Lin from attending the 65th annual Miss World pageant in China last year, the event’s British organizers offered her a consolation prize, of sorts: They promised to allow her a chance to compete in the 2016 finals, which are currently underway in suburban Washington.

What they did not tell her was that she could smile but not speak out publicly during the event, which is largely sponsored by Chinese companies.

Over the past three weeks, as she and her fellow contestants have rehearsed for Tuesday’s finale, Ms. Lin, 26 — an actress, classically trained pianist and outspoken critic of Chinese human rights abuses — has been barred from speaking to the news media, friends and relatives said.”

Read the complete story here.

Berks County prosecutor gets first conviction in Pa. on “involuntary servitude”

(Reading) — A prosecutor in the midstate is believed to be the first one in the state to get a conviction under a new law meant to address human trafficking.

Berks County Assistant District Attorney Carmen White brought an involuntary servitude charge against a man who provided a teenage girl with drugs, and threatened to tell others if she didn’t have sex with him.

35-year-old Martin Mercado pleaded guilty in the case.

Read the full story on WITF.org.

Fight human trafficking by uploading photos of your hotel room

 

WTSP in Tampa Bay recently reported about a new app created to help fight human trafficking.

The app is called TraffickCam and is designed to allow hotel guests to snap photos of hotel rooms that are then shared with law enforcement officers to help track down potential traffickers.

 

Read the full story here.