Human Trafficking

Human Trafficking charges, formally referred to as “trafficking of persons” by Title V of the Texas Penal Code, is a serious offense which carries criminal penalties ranging from 25 years to life.

If you’re accused of such an offense, or of being involved in any way in a conspiracy involving the trafficking of persons, Attorney Mark Bennett and the legal team of Bennett & Bennett may be able to help you. The phone number to our office is 713-224-1747.

Human Trafficking & Texas Law

Houston Human Trafficking LawyerTexas law defines human trafficking as the “continuous trafficking of persons” or “trafficking of persons”, and, if a person is convicted of the offense, they’ll face penalties under 1st Degree Felony sentencing guidelines.

Continuous Trafficking of Persons, or shall we say the “continuous” component, implies that the person accused was involved in an ongoing human trafficking conspiracy in excess of 30 days.

Trafficking In Persons: A Short Definition

A person commits the offense if they knowingly traffic a person for the purpose of engaging in any act that takes advantage of that person’s labor/efforts against their will, or their ability to resist, or for any form of profit, or receives/intends to receive benefit, from such a scheme.

Common Human Trafficking Cases

Although pimping and prostitution are commonly associated with human trafficking, the charge of “trafficking of persons” is not limited to such. Under Texas Law, a person can be charged with “trafficking of persons” for committing, or being involving in any of the activities listed below.

  • Labor Trafficking
  • Illegal Immigration
  • Prostitution & Promotion of Prostitution
  • Aggravated Promotion of Prostitution
  • Compelling Prostitution
  • Trafficking Children for Labor or Sex Services
    • Knowledge that trafficked children will be subject to, or victims of the following;
      • Sexual Abuse, and Sexual Performances
      • Indecency
      • Continued Sexual Abuse and/or Aggravated Sexual Assault
      • Employment, or Employment Harmful to Children
      • Promotion/Possession of Child Pornography
  • Receiving Benefits from the proceeds of activities involving human trafficking
  • Traffics a person through force, fraud, or coercion.

Potential Defenses for Persons Charged

They Made You Do It

In some cases, not only are the people being trafficked victimized, but so are their handlers. If you were forced to engage in the day-to-day operations of a human trafficking operation due to threats, being in the country illegally, or because a loved one of yours was kidnapped or threatened, there may be a defense option for you that will keep you out of prison.

Drug Trafficking is Often Human Trafficking

In Texas, especially in the southern half of our state, human trafficking has little to do with the sex trade, but everything to do with the drug trade. Convictions for these type of cases range from 5 years to life, but you don’t have to be convicted if you were forced into such a life.

Attorney Mark Bennett may be able to help you, and with any evidence we may be able to secure, have your case dismissed.

False Allegations of Human Trafficking

For one reason or another, erroneous charges of human trafficking aren’t rare in the state of Texas. False charges of human trafficking can stem from the defendant being an owner of a strip club, massage parlor, or any number of businesses that are subject to human trafficking suspicions. Also, the crime may be going on without the knowledge of the business owner, which creates defense options.

Marginal Players

In some cases, “marginal players” are people running legitimate businesses like car services and advertising companies who may have unknowingly helped traffickers and find themselves charged as equal participants in cases… SOURCE

Your Best Option: A Solid Legal Defense

Bennett & Bennett, Houston Criminal-Defense Lawyers

A jury will see any person charged with such an offense as a perpetrator of modern-day slavery. The legal standard is “innocent until proven guilty” and our team will promulgate this message.

Our legal team will work to ensure that the jury sees you as a person, rather than some form of slavemaster.

Since 1995 Attorneys Mark & Jennifer Bennett have provided excellent legal representation for our clients in State and Federal Court.

Attorney Mark Bennett is “Board Certified®” in Criminal Law per the Texas Board of Legal Specialization, and is a welcomed litigant in Federal Court settings.

If you need to consult with a proven professional about your situation, contact us today, at 713-224-1747.

Houston Lawyers for Human Trafficking Cases

Bennett & Bennett