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Airport clerk sees girls are acting fishy and ends up saving them from a human trafficking ring

Airport employees deal with a lot during their shifts. From delays and cancellations to angry customers, lost luggage, and missed flights. What they likely don’t deal with every day is human sex trafficking rings. This American Airlines employee is a hero and still deserves some recognition, even today, after she rescued two young girls from being trafficked. (1)

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Airport Employee Saves Teenage Girls From Sex Trafficking Ring

In February of 2018, an American Airlines customer service employee Denise Miracle in Sacramento, Florida noticed something strange while she was on her shift. Two young girls, aged 17 and 15 years, came to her counter with one-way, first-class tickets to New York. The tickets were booked with a credit card that had neither of their last names on it. They were alone and only had small bags with them.

Miracle described that there were several other red flags as well. They had no ID on them and the tickets were one-way, non-direct. They were booked into first class on a credit card that not only didn’t carry either of their names but was flagged as fraudulent. Miracle told them that there was an issue with their tickets and they wouldn’t be able to fly.

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“Between the two of them, they had a bunch of small bags. It seemed to me as if they were running away from home,” Denice said. “They kept looking at each other in a way that seemed fearful and anxious. I had a gut feeling that something just wasn’t right.”

Denise Miracle. Image credit: American Airlines

An Important Call

The girls walked away to make a phone call. Watching them, Miracle decided to call the Sacramento County Sheriff’s Department Airport Bureau. Four deputies immediately responded and came to investigate the situation. It was a phone call that quite literally saved these girls’ lives.

Read: Father who never stopped searching for abducted son reunited after 24 years

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A Fake Modelling Gig

The girls explained to the deputies that the person who bought the tickets was a man named Drey. They had met him on Instagram. He invited the pair to New York for the weekend, promising them a modeling gig that paid $2000. He said it also included performing in some music videos. The girls didn’t tell their parents and went to the airport together. 

When the deputy told them that their tickets were only one-way, the girls were completely shocked. They had no idea, thinking that they were round-trip. The person that they called while Miracle was calling the police department was, in fact, this man Drey. When the police tried to contact him, however, he didn’t answer. All of his social media profiles had vanished, as well. The authorities then called the girls’ parents and informed them that their daughters were nearly victims of what they believed to be a human sex trafficking ring. Thankfully, the girls were returned home safe and sound. 

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Human Trafficking At Airports

This story has a happy ending. Unfortunately, there are many that do not end like this. There are more than 20 million victims of human labor and sex trafficking every single year. Airport workers in human trafficking hubs receive special training to identify victims and hopefully get them the help that they need. Clearly, as was in this case, that training works. (2)

Many governments have policies and programs in place to help prevent trafficking from happening, as well as to support and empower victims and survivors. Education is a big piece, not only to help victims recognize dangerous situations but to empower others, people like Denise Miracle, to be able to take action. (3)

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There are also plenty of things that you can do to help prevent human trafficking. Be a conscious consumer and do research on the companies that are producing the foods, clothes, and other items that you buy. Encourage schools and other groups to include human trafficking education in their programming. Learn the indicators of human trafficking, how they often target young people, and their recruitment tactics. (4)

Finally, if you see something suspicious, do something about it. If your gut is telling you that something is off, call the authorities, Assist those people. Sure, there is always a chance that you may be wrong about a situation. Still, it is better to take action and be wrong than to do nothing and have yet another vulnerable person be trafficked into slavery. You can call 911 or the National Human Trafficking Hotline (1-888-373-7888). Speak out, take action, save a life.

Keep Reading: Missing Teen Rescued After Making SOS Hand Gesture She Learned from TikTok

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Sources

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  1. Sacramento agent’s instinct saves children from online predator.” AA
  2. A quick-thinking airport worker saved 2 girls from a suspected human trafficking plot when they checked in with one-way tickets.” Insider. Talia Lakritz. February 21, 2018.
  3. Actions to Combat Human Trafficking.” Pubic Safety.
  4. 20 Ways You Can Help Fight Human Trafficking.” State.
Julie Hambleton
Freelance Writer
Julie Hambleton has a BSc in Food and Nutrition from the Western University, Canada, is a former certified personal trainer and a competitive runner. Julie loves food, culture, and health, and enjoys sharing her knowledge to help others make positive changes and live healthier lives.
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