Since 2007, there have been 125 human trafficking cases reported in Mississippi. Governor Phil Bryant says recognizing the signs of child human trafficking is important for citizens and law enforcement alike.
"One of the things that we need, for example, is a new ability to tell the general public. So, we've got to start a public relations effort to let people know to be on the watch for this," Bryant says.
Bryant says human trafficking victims deserve justice. Brian Johnston of the Georgia Bureau of Investigation says the majority of cases under investigation start on the Internet.
"We do a lot of Internet based exploitation cases, both in the recruitment of juveniles in the sex trade, and in the selling of juveniles in the sex trade. So, we spend a lot of our time on the Internet looking for missing children and throw-away children and things of that nature," says Johnston.
James Herzog of the Mississippi Bureau of Investigation says child sex trafficking is becoming one of the largest industries in the world.
"We're all working with other states to try to enforce this horrible, horrible crime that's taking place. In the United States, it's become a 9.8 billion dollar industry," says Herzog.
Experts say cut and bruises, tattoos, frequent runaways and even truancy from school are all signs of possible child sex trafficking. Any indication of human trafficking can be reported to The National Center for Missing and Exploited Children.