DOTHAN, Ala.–If you have a child, especially a girl, you need to be aware that people are out there that will kidnap them and force them into a life of prostitution. That’s the message that authorities are hoping to send with the sentencing of Santiago Alonso Wednesday, for kidnapping and trafficking a Meridian, Mississippi girl.
Alonso got 40 years on the human trafficking charge and ten years for drugs. He was arrested in 2013.
The girl was 17 when she was taken from Mississippi, forced to do drugs and prostituted in Memphis and Dothan.
Alonso’s case is the first human trafficking case to get a sentence in Alabama.
“The more publicity you get, the more information you get out there, the more law enforcement recognized these cases for what they are on the trafficking end of the equation instead of the prostitution end and I think that’s gonna hopefully open the doors for more recognition of what the issues are,” said Banks Smith, D.A. in Dothan.