CHICAGO (CBS) — Lawyers for the National Immigrant Justice Center, which is part of Chicago’s Heartland Alliance, are now giving legal help to about 500 immigrant children – 85 to 90 percent of whom have come from Central America.
Managing Attorney Ashley Huebner told the story of one girl, now 18 years old, whose odyssey Huebner says is more or less typical.
“Her father physically and sexually abused her throughout her whole childhood,” she said.
Eventually the girl’s father left.
“When she grew a little older, she was kidnapped by a woman who was affiliated with a gang, and the woman attempted to traffic her into prostitution,” Huebner said.
The girl managed to escape and reported the kidnapping to police.
“When the gang found out she had reported the incident to police, the gang began to target her and threaten her and her brother,” Huebner said. “They subsequently kidnapped her, gang-raped her.”
Heubner said the girl was able to get away, and eventually ended up in Chicago.