Elected Official Indicted With Claims Of Human Smuggling And Child SellingOctober 09, 2019 12:09
(Image source from: azfamily.com)
In recent reports, an elected official in Arizona has been charged with 11 crimes and felonies in Utah, human smuggling, sale of a child and salient communications fraud being a few of the many crimes.
The official, Paul D. Peterson was arrested in California on 08th October, 2019, Tuesday following the charges as pressed in the Utah Attorney General’s Office.
Peterson is a well reputed adoption lawyer practicing with this license in Utah and Arizona and is also the elected County Assessor of the Maricopa County.
The Attorney General’s office alleges that Peterson has been running an illegal adoption scheme under which he recruited, transported as well as offered payment to the pregnant Marshallese women to give up their babies for adoption in the United States.
The United States and the Marshal Islands have ties which prevents these kind of interaction, making them an illegal act altogether.
As per the statement issued by the investigations, it suggests that Peterson ““failed to disclose the compact and other material aspects of his scheme to adoptive parents who paid him to facilitate their adoptions.”
If the reports are to be believed, it suggested that Peterson has already transported over 40 Marshallese women over the last 3 years. He is evicted and charged for his fraudulents and offenses in Arkansas and Arizona as well.
Attorney General Sean Reyes in a statement suggested saying that this kind of heinous act by Peterson has affected two vulnerable groups in both the countries of the Marshall Islands and the United States. The same exploited the pregnant mothers from the Marshall Islands along with expectant adoptive parents in the United States. He said that it is actually be cruel and heartbreaking to see both the families being manipulated in such a manner.
Chief Criminal Deputy Spencer Austin clarified that the authorities were alerted by the concerned hospital workers consistently cold calling the human trafficking tip line, making them look into the matters and take immediate action to stop it from proceeding further.
Austin further clarified saying that this is why the authorities are consistently asking the people to speak up when they witness something wrong happening. Given that there are so many resources available around, it is possible for the concerned authorities to take the action needed to fight back the problems and the issues surrounding this.
To further bring out things that are hidden in this case, the Utah Attorney General’s Office has also started a hotline to assist any person who has been a victim of Peterson’s fraudulent acts. The hotline number is 801-839-5640.
By Somapika Dutta