Attorney General Sam Olens Continues Fight Against Human Trafficking, Appoints Statewide Prosecutor
Attorney General Sam Olens announced today that he has appointed a new prosecutor, Camila Wright, who will be dedicated to the prosecution of human trafficking. As a prosecutor for the Attorney General’s Office, she will have the authority to prosecute human trafficking throughout the entire state and will assist jurisdictions as they work these complex cases. In addition to handling prosecutions, Ms. Wright will conduct trainings around the state for law enforcement and oversee the Attorney General’s policy agenda on human trafficking.
“Human trafficking is a scourge on our communities that robs our children of their dignity, innocence and basic human rights,” said Attorney General Olens. “I have been deeply committed to fighting and ending this horrific crime throughout my tenure as Attorney General, from advocating for tougher laws, to raising awareness. I am thrilled that Camila will be joining our team. She is one of the leading human trafficking prosecutors in the state, and her expertise will be invaluable as we strive to eradicate this modern day slavery, which victimizes our most vulnerable children.”
Ms. Wright established the Fulton County Human Trafficking Unit within the Fulton County District Attorney’s Office. She has developed protocols for investigating and prosecuting human trafficking cases, and has worked extensively with the Federal Bureau of Investigation, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement, the Georgia Bureau of Investigation (GBI) and local law enforcement. During her tenure in Fulton County, Ms. Wright secured convictions and guilty pleas for 19 traffickers, including two life sentences. Additionally, she was one of the first prosecutors in the state to successfully convict a buyer, who was sentenced to five years in prison.
“I'm honored to be a part of the work Attorney General Sam Olens has been doing to combat human trafficking, and I am excited for the opportunity to fight human trafficking on a statewide level,” said Ms. Wright. “This terrible crime has destroyed the lives of too many children, and I look forward to working with prosecutors and law enforcement across the state to bring its perpetrators out of the shadows.”
The GBI is a vital partner in the battle against human trafficking. Its Child Exploitation and Computer Crimes Unit collaborates with local law enforcement across the state to detect and investigate child sex trafficking cases. GBI Director Vernon Keenan made the following statement, “I commend Attorney General Olens on his decision to add a human trafficking prosecutor to his team. This sends a strong message to traffickers that Georgia will not tolerate those who prey on children. The GBI looks forward to working with Ms. Wright.”
Attorney General Olens has worked closely with the non-profit community on prevention and awareness efforts. In 2013, Attorney General Olens partnered with non-profits StreetGrace and youthSpark, as well as law enforcement, to launch “Georgia’s Not Buying It,” a public awareness campaign aimed at reducing demand.
Jennifer Swain, Acting Executive Director of youthSpark, said, “I applaud Attorney General Olens for appointing a prosecutor devoted to human trafficking cases. I have admired his dedication to fighting this injustice as I have worked with him over the past three years. He has been a true champion for our cause.”
“Attorney General Sam Olens continues to show his dedication to ending domestic minor sex trafficking, most recently by hiring Georgia’s first statewide anti-trafficking attorney,” said Cheryl DeLuca-Johnson, President and Chief Executive Officer of Street Grace. “Hiring Camila Wright for this position demonstrates his commitment to keeping Georgia’s children safe and prosecuting those who don’t.”
Combating human trafficking has been a key priority of Attorney General Olens since he took office in 2011. During his first year in office, he worked with the Georgia General Assembly to strengthen Georgia’s human trafficking law, which is now a national model. The new law increases the punishment for human trafficking from a one year sentence to a minimum of ten years in prison. If the trafficking involves a minor, traffickers face 25 years to life in prison, instead of a maximum sentence of just 20 years. Additionally, the buyer can be charged with human trafficking, and the age of consent (16) or the lack of knowledge of the age of the victim cannot be used as a defense.
Attorney General Olens views the appointment of a human trafficking prosecutor as the next phase in a long, but necessary fight. “This is not a city problem or a rural problem. This is a problem facing our entire state and nation. I am proud that Georgia is taking a leading role in attacking the problem head on. I value the work that our District Attorneys are doing in this area, and I look forward to working with them to see that criminals who prey on our children are taken off the streets.”