Seeking Justice for Sex Trafficking Survivors
Human trafficking is one of the fastest growing criminal enterprises in the world, with a majority of cases falling under sexual exploitation. Over 100,000 children a year are forced into prostitution, contributing to a $9.8 billion industry in the US alone.
It’s time to take a multi-faceted approach.
District attorneys and law enforcement across the country are working to bring traffickers to justice – but that’s just one side of this very complex story. There are also countless businesses, such as online advertisers, social media platforms, motels and hotels, and transportation companies, that are profiting from the sexual exploitation of trafficking victims. That’s where civil lawsuits come into play.
With a team of attorneys, therapists, private investigators, and other experts, we are on a mission to help sex trafficking victims get compensation from the companies who financially benefited from their victimization.
Our goals are to:
- Get compensation for sex trafficking survivors, so they have the resources they need to get themselves to safety and reclaim their lives.
- Use civil lawsuits to pressure companies to change their behaviors and policies – putting an end to the safe havens they’ve created for traffickers.
About Our Team
Leading our comprehensive approach to helping victims of sex trafficking, Pat McDonough has gathered a local and nationwide team of experts to handle these very sensitive cases from inception to final judgment. The team includes (but certainly isn’t limited to):
- Female intake specialist to assist survivors as they make first contact.
- Therapists who are focused on clients’ emotional and mental well-being.
- Non-profits and survivors who help clients get to safety (when they’re ready).
- Expert witnesses who have particular expertise with the defendants’ businesses.
- Attorneys (locally and nationwide) who are best-suited to create a legal strategy and represent clients in court.
Pat leads the sex trafficking division for Andersen, Tate and Carr, a Georgia based law firm with a national presence that has successfully recovered multiple million dollar plus judgments for clients.
Pat Has Been Featured In:
Affiliations & Associates
Pat has dedicated a large part of his life to giving back to the community. He has helped countless survivors with the arrest records and improper charges.
Before joining Andersen, Tate & Carr, Pat was the youngest District Attorney in the state of Georgia – leading a multi-faceted team that created child advocacy centers to help victims of sexual abuse with a comprehensive approach that addressed both trauma recovery and legal representation.
An active volunteer in the community, Pat has helped to raise over a million dollars to help the homeless population – including victims of human trafficking.
What You Should Know About Civil Lawsuits
There are laws that say you can hold businesses accountable if they’ve put their profits above your safety – such as looking the other way when there are signs of sex trafficking. This process takes place in civil court, as opposed to criminal court, and you have up to 10 years to file your lawsuit.
For example: if a hotel operator knows that young women are staying in a room and men are continually seen entering and exiting that room – the hotel is legally responsible for reporting the suspicious behavior.
It’s not like a TV crime drama.
With a civil lawsuit, you remain in control. Of course, we think about those dramatic court scenes from crime shows on TV – but it’s highly unlikely that it would be that way. In a civil case, you can decide to stop the lawsuit if you become uncomfortable.
There are many safeguards for survivors now.
The law is much more understanding of trauma survivors today than in the past. There are many ways to protect your privacy and health to avoid re-traumatization. Trafficking lawsuits are frequently filed using fictitious names such as "Jane Doe" to protect the identity of survivors. Other accommodations are often made as well, such as conducting video depositions in a safe space so a survivor may not be required to be present in court. You can also take advantage of the 10 year "statute of limitations" to get the counseling you need before filing a lawsuit. You are empowered.