The state’s Human Trafficking Task Force on Monday released its 2022 report that revealed an increase in the exploitation and trafficking of labor workers and children identified in sex trafficking cases. 

Charleston County was ranked No. 2 in the reports, according to S.C. Attorney General Alan Wilson. He clarified that this does not mean the county has the second highest number of actual human trafficking cases, but the second highest number of reports.

“I believe the metrics indicate awareness more than activity,” he said. “That doesn’t mean there’s not activity going on in another surrounding county, it just means that more people are aware.”

Local organizations such as The Formation Project and I Am Voices say despite the rising number of reports, this type of crime is still underreported and more cases could be happening under the radar. Reporting is the best way to increase awareness, according to the organizations’ leaders. 

To report an incident or seek victim services, you can contact local law enforcement or call the National Human Trafficking Hotline at 888-373-7888.

In other headlines:

1st Congressional District illegally gerrymandered by race, judges rule. A panel of three federal judges ruled Friday that South Carolina legislators racially gerrymandered the district’s map in a constitutionally required remapping in 2021.

Charleston Co. schools to set ‘guard rails’ for outside counsel. The Charleston County School Board is set to meet to discuss setting “guard rails” for outside counsel after Superintendent Don Kennedy “parted ways” with the district’s top lawyer last year. Meanwhile, the county board also said it will continue to search for a new superintendent. 

Charleston Catholic priest accused of sex abuse pleads not guilty. A Catholic priest who previously served in the Roman Catholic Diocese of Charleston pleaded not guilty Monday to federal sexual abuse charges. The priest is accused of assaulting an 11-year-old child starting in 2020.

McMaster to begin second full term as S.C. governor. Gov. Henry McMaster is set to be sworn in Jan. 11, becoming the first person in the state to be sworn into office three times.

  • To get dozens of South Carolina news stories every business day, contact the folks at SC Clips.

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