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CASE NAME:People v. Silvia Gonzalez
ALL PLAINTIFFS:People [New York]
ALL DEFENDANTS:Silvia Gonzalez
CITATION:2011 NY Slip Op 21235
DOCKET NUMBER:93N022568
SOURCE:Lexis Search, News Article
TYPE OF CASE:Criminal
RELATED CASE CITATION:93N022568, 93N023779, 93N025469, 93N027349, 93N029719, 93N030314, 93N031081, 93N032469, 93N036038, 93N036921, 93N037344, 93N039670, 93N041917, 93N043925, 93N047283, 93N047732, 93N048014, 93N049302, 93N04994, 93N050389, 93N051596, 93N052531, 93N054307, etc
TYPE OF TRIAL:Judge
TRIAL JUDGE(S):Hon. Lynn R. Kotler
YEAR OF ARREST:1993
YEAR OF VERDICT:2011
TYPE OF COURT:State Court
STATE:New York
FEDERAL DISTRICT:
STATE COUNTY:New York County
AGE OF VICTIM(S):
NUMBER OF VICTIMS:1
GENDER OF VICTIM(S):Female
VICTIM'S COUNTRY OF ORIGIN:Brazil
METHOD OF ENTRY INTO THE U.S.:B-1/B-2 visa
WAS VICTIM CHARGED WITH A CRIME:Yes
NUMBER OF DEFENDANT(S):1
GENDER OF DEFENDANT(S):Female
TYPE OF INDUSTRY:Sex
CASE CATEGORIZATION:Commercial Sexual Exploitation/Prostitution
FIRST CHARGE:N.Y. Penal § 240.37 (loitering for the purpose of engaging in prostitution)
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FIRST CHARGE VERDICT/PLEA:Dismissed
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SECOND CHARGE:N.Y. Penal § 300 (prostitution)
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SUMMARY:Brazilian citizen Silvia Gonzalez moved to vacate 86 prostitution-related convictions accrued over a period of three years (1993-1995) under a 2010 New York statute (N.Y. Penal § 440.10 (1)(i)) permitting a defendant-victim of sex trafficking to vacate convictions where "participation in the offense[s] was a result of having been a victim of sex trafficking." Gonzalez presented evidence that she was living in the United States under fraudulent immigration documents. A woman ("Marisol") offered to help her obtain a green card but then seized her immigration documents, refusing to return them unless Gonzalez paid her and engaged in prostitution. Gonzalez, who did not speak English at the time, testified that her captors drove her to locations where she was watched and directed to work. At times, Gonzalez turned herself into authorities because "being in jail was preferable to working on the street." The judge found Gonzalez's testimony credible and consistent with the notion that "victims of human trafficking are often too wary of authorities or too traumatized by their experiences to be able or willing to timely report their victimization," and vacated her 86 prostitution-related convictions.
Approval Status:Approved
Approver Comments:
            
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