Silhouette of unrecognizable sad girl behind stained glass window sitting alone Facing a Fort Lauderdale Human Trafficking criminal charge can feel like the end of the world, but our experienced attorneys at Rossen Law Firm are here to listen to your side of the story and work our hardest to keep your life intact. 

We empower you with all the information you need to make the right decisions moving forward when it comes to your case and your future. To discuss your case with an aggressive South Florida human trafficking lawyer, contact out team today.

What is Human Trafficking?

Human trafficking involves the sexual exploitation or forced labor of another person. Human Trafficking is considered a form of modern-day slavery and is aggressively prosecuted in South Florida.

The crime of Human Trafficking is when someone knowingly engages in – or financially benefits from – transporting, soliciting, recruiting, harboring, providing, enticing, maintaining, or obtaining another person for the purpose of services, labor, or commercial sexual activity [FLA. STAT. § 787.06 (2019)]. If you have any further questions about human trafficking and the potential penalties associated with such a charge, speak with one of our diligent attorneys serving Fort Lauderdale.

Human Trafficking Victims: Adult vs. Child Distinctions

If an adult is allegedly a victim of human trafficking, the Florida State Prosecutor must prove that the adult victim was coerced into performing labor, services, or commercial sexual activity.

If a child is alleged to have been a victim of human trafficking, the prosecutor does not need to prove that the child was coerced into performing labor, services, or commercial sexual activity.

As a result, the act of exploiting a child for those purposes alone supports a Human Trafficking conviction. 

This is similar in reasoning to other types of laws as it embraces the idea that children and minors do not have the ability to give “consent” to those types of activities. 


The minimum and maximum penalties for Human Trafficking in South Florida increase based upon whether or not coercion was used during the human trafficking, if the human trafficking was for labor and services or for commercial sexual activity, and on if the victim was a child, unauthorized alien, or mentally impaired person.

Human Trafficking for Labor or Services or Commercial Sexual Activity Consequences

As a South Florida attorney can further explain, the crime of Human Trafficking for Labor or Services or Commercial Sexual Activity is a first-degree felony and is assigned either a Level 7, 8, or 9 offense severity ranking under Florida’s Criminal Punishment Code.

If convicted, a judge is required to sentence the defendant to at least approximately 21 months in prison and can also impose any combination of the following penalties: 30 years in prison, 30 years on probation, and $10,000 in fines.

Human Trafficking of a Child or Mentally Defective Person for Commercial Sexual Activity Consequences

The crime of Human Trafficking of a Child or Mentally Defective Person for Commercial Sexual Activity is a life felony and is assigned a Level 10 offense severity ranking under Florida’s Criminal Punishment Code. Level 10 is the highest level of severity.

Upon conviction, a judge is required to impose a minimum sentence of  at least approximately 66 months in prison and can also impose any combination of the following penalties: life in prison, life on probation, and $10,000 in fines.


If you’re facing a Human Trafficking charge in Fort Lauderdale – we are here to help you through this challenging time. Rossen Law Firm has extensive experience providing a compassionate and effective defense to Human Trafficking charges.

Facing a Human Trafficking charge is difficult. We understand that we’re defending your freedom, criminal record, and future, and our South Florida human trafficking lawyers will do our best work to protect your rights.

Give our office a call if you’re facing a Human Trafficking charge in Florida. We’ll listen to your story, discuss the best action plan for you, and see what resources may help you. We always go above and beyond in every case we take, because your success is our success.                                                                             

Human Trafficking Defenses

  • First Amendment Activity: One defense to Human Trafficking is First Amendment Activity, which occurs when the conduct the defendant is alleged to have committed is considered a constitutionally protected activity, such as picketing or organized protesting. A skilled defense attorney may be able to argue first amendment rights as part of your defense to human trafficking crimes depending on the details of your case.
  • Prostitution: It is a defense to the crime of Human Trafficking for Commercial Sexual Activity if it can be shown that the victim was voluntarily engaged in prostitution and had not been exploited or coerced into engaging in the prostitution.
    • As a result, a person who hired a prostitute from a classified ad would not be guilty of Human Trafficking, although they would likely be guilty of Solicitation of Prostitution.
    • Likewise, a person who formed a business partnership with a prostitute might not be guilty of Human Trafficking for Commercial Sexual Activity, although they would likely be guilty of the lesser crime of Deriving Support from the Proceeds of Prostitution.

In some instances, the fringe or marginally involved individuals who are running legitimate business such as an advertising company or a car service and may unwittingly or without knowledge help people engaged in human trafficking crimes – these people are known as “Fringe players” and may end up in a situation where they are charged with a crime as equal participants in such cases. This means that if you unknowingly were involved in a human trafficking crime by way of your legitimate business – you could be in trouble as if you were involved on purpose.

These unfortunate people may not even have had contact or known the traffickers but are criminally charged as if they forced victims into exploitation themselves.

Free Human Trafficking Criminal Defense Strategy Session 

We’ve successfully handled several different Human Trafficking cases and are fully committed to providing premiere representation to protect your rights as fully as possible.

Rossen Law Firm offers a FREE strategy session so you know how we’ll plan to get the best possible result for your case. Unlike most law firms, we don’t put a time limit on this meeting.


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