Copyright © 2017 by
Louis Alexandre Forestier
All rights reserved. This book or any
may not be reproduced or used in any manner
without the express written permission of the
except for the use of brief quotations in a book review.
Published in 2017 in the
This is a work of fiction. Names, characters, businesses, places,
events and incidents are either the products of the author’s
imagination or used in a fictitious manner. Any resemblance to actual
persons, living or dead, or actual events is purely coincidental.
/ RES / 55/2
September 13, 2000
adopted by the UN General Assembly
The General Assembly
Adopts the following
our efforts to fight transnational crime in all its dimensions,
including trafficking and smuggling of
human beings and money laundering.
by Alexandre Louis Forestier
Cast of Characters
Alimah Koumi: Beautiful
Marcos Ferrari: Young
Eyasu: Young Ethiopian woman, Alimah´s companion in her captivity.
Barlow: “Uncle Charley”. Craftsman born in Mississippi and living
in Harlem, Marcos´ friend .
Gebre: Eritrean people trafficker.
O'Halloran: NYPD Lieutenant.
Sandoval: NYPD Sergeant.
Caruso: NYPD officer.
Washington: NYPD office
Kolski: NYPD office
Jim: Medical Dr., former Uncle Charley´s army comrade.
Murphy: Veteran NYPD sergeant
Flynn O'Halloran: Paddy O'Halloran´s wife and daughter of an old
Eric Murphy´s friend.
Gardner Washington: Leroy´s wife.
Gardner: Loretta´s father. Manhattan City Councilor.
Herbert Plummer: Director of the Comptroller Office of the New York
and Fernanda Ferrari: Marcos´ uncle and
aunt, residents in Buenos Aires.
girl ran along the isolated alley not daring to look back; as her
high-heeled shoes prevented her from speeding she took them off with
a quick gesture and continued her race barefoot running on the cold
pavement of the dark street in Harlem. She heard a noise coming from
the pursuers following her, three or four burly Africans who had
participated in the horrible scene that she was leaving behind. The
girl shook her head trying to ward off the recent memory that had
shocked her to such an extreme degree. Her pace was very fast, like a
woman born and raised in the steppes of Africa who as a child had run
alongside their brothers. The woman knew that the heavy human
bloodhounds who pursued her would not be able to catch with her and
the distance between them widened every second. The same thought the
pursuers who were at the end of their breathing capabilities. Several
screams were heard, the men were shouting to each other giving orders
in their dialect and Alimah trembled guessing what they were saying;
without missing a beat she prepared for what she knew was coming next
. Three detonations sounded reverberating through the narrow alley.
The woman closed her eyes waiting for the result of the shooting. She
felt a profound and gnawing pain in the right shoulder. Alimah knew
that the bullet had entered her from the back and exited through the
front of the shoulder so the blood loss would be twofold. The girl
stumbled momentarily but could recover her step. Her father´s face
passed fleetingly through her mind. She knew that wherever he was the
old warrior would pride of his daughter.
from that moment began to fray although her legs still responded to a
center of will over which the woman had no longer control, her brain
darkened and Alimah passed out. Her body still toured several steps
led by inertia and finally rolled between some trash bins resulting
in their fall with a great clatter. A bitter cold began to invade her
recent events immediately prior to the
persecution paraded through her fevered and delirious mind. What her
psyche had been dodging to remember when she was fleeing to avoid its
crushing weight now returned to her memory, devoid of the protection
of the will. The image of Samwarit, the beautiful Ethiopian girl that
had tried to escape with her from the hands of their captors clearly
appeared in her memory, as well as Jemal´s, the human beings
trafficker band leader in whose hands the girls had fallen with the
complicity of the ship captain that had brought them to New York.
Alimah recalled the twenty-five day’s journey from the distant port
on the Red Sea, located near Port Sudan but devoid of any control by
the local authorities. On that ship traveled twenty Ethiopian,
Eritrean, Sudanese and Somali women, all young and beautiful, in what
undoubtedly was a human trafficking trip linked to prostitution. All
were constrained to stay inside two grimy containers within which
they sometimes had to do their physiological needs, and out of which
they were only allowed to come to breath pure air on deck when the
ship was far from shore and out of busy shipping routes .
reaching their destination they had entered the port of New York
inside the containers and were carried overnight out of the port area
and brought to what they later learned was Harlem. As the area was
strongly patrolled by the city police, the women practically were not
allowed to leave the abandoned warehouse where they were kept.
most of the women were terrified and moved like zombies to the beat
of the orders of the men who had imprisoned them, Alimah and Samwarit
were looking from the outset for an opportunity to escape from their
confinement. It had been almost a month since their clandestine
arrival in New York, and some of the women had been sold to who knows
what sordid brothel organization and had never returned. The girls
received only one shower and decent clothes when they were exhibited
to unknown buyers and delivered to their new masters.
night the girls woke up due to an uproar coming from the ground floor
of the ruined warehouse including cries of men, sounds of broken
things and finally shots and groans. A rival gang had attacked the
premises in order to chase the newcomers away from what they
considered their hunting ground.
took Samwarit´s hand and led her down the dirty stairs leading to
the ground floor. On the lower steps lay dying one of the captors, a
gigantic black with his face and arms full of tattoos. He still had a
knife in his hand. Amilah pushed the body down with her foot to
release the stairs and as she passed by took the knife into her own
hands. Sanwarit was always holding Alimah by her skirt. In one of the
corridors of the ground floor lay one of the kidnappers, with several
bullet wounds in his chest. The warehouse door facing the alley was
ajar, but another body blocked it. The two women jumped over the
corpse and finally came to the long awaited freedom. They ran towards
a corner in the flickering clarity of the public lighting and their
blood froze when they saw one of the thugs who appeared turning the
corner less than five steps away from them. The man was even more
surprised than the women and did not react immediately. Without a
moment's hesitation Amilah sharp dagger stuck in his belly and the
man fell heavily.
two girls ran desperately trying to put distance to the site of their
confinement but soon heard voices that were familiar. The traffickers
that had held them prisoner had recovered from the attack and were
already in their pursuit. Suddenly the youth heard a noise that they
desperately recognized as an approaching motorcycle. They realized
that fleeing on foot had some chance to escape but they could never
outrun a motorcycle.
screech of the braking vehicle sounded
incredibly close. Two men, who like everyone else in the band were of
Somali origin jumped on the women. One of them took Sanwarit´s long
hair and cut her throat with a single stroke, while the other bore
down on Amilah. However he slipped on an unseen stream of oil in the
dark and fell; although he immediately tried to stand up Amilah stuck
the dagger in his neck from which it began to emerge a jet of blood.
She momentarily stared up and looked back to the corner Sanwarit and
she had left moments before; fleetingly the girl glimpsed another car
with the headlights turned on; in the light shed by them she
distinguished the silhouettes of two very tall men; both were dressed
in suits, unlike the thugs who were chasing her who wore baggy casual
clothes. Amilah could clearly discern that one of them was white,
with very light skin and blond hair, and the other was black and very
corpulent. The next time she looked in that direction the car and the
men had vanished. This vision, forgotten in the welter of events that
unfolded later, was however recorded somewhere in Amilah´s memory.
woman then left the place running from the scene to prevent giving
other trackers time to reach her. This is where our story begins.
trafficking is one of the oldest and
cruelest stigmas of humanity. European and Arab dominated this
traffic for centuries and America was partly populated by Africans
brought by slave merchants. The Arabs were very active in this
traffic, particularly with supply sources throughout Africa and
destination in the Middle East, the rest of Asia, Africa and Europe.
It is estimated that between the seventeenth and nineteenth centuries
more than ten million human beings were kidnapped, taken as droves of
cattle and sold as cheap labor, domestic servants, cannon fodder and
basically sex slaves and prostitutes, including women and children in
the latter category. In no way can it be considered these activities
as part of the past as they continue in a latent form today, with the
complicity of governments in the points of departure and arrival.
Horn of Africa is a region located on the eastern tip of the African
continent, on the Red Sea and the Arabian Sea, and facing Yemen and
Saudi Arabia. It consists of Ethiopia (the largest and most populous
country), Eritrea, Somalia and Djibouti. Historically it was one of
the main areas of action of the slave hunters and traders, which then
drove their prey in harsh caravans through its western neighbor,
Sudan (one of the largest countries in Africa) to the above referred
slaves markets. The various routes included the Sahara Desert, the
Red Sea and the Indian Ocean.
of slaves to Europe often enter by the dilated Italian Mediterrean
coast and from there they continue their to the final destinations.
On a recent date have been detected boat trips to the Americas,
particularly United States. This is our history.
cell phone rang with the distinctive
calendar recorded message tune. The young man pulled the device out
of his jeans back pocket with a puzzled gesture, since he did not
remember having recorded anything for that day. The screen
illuminated and he slapped his forehead as he read the reminder
recorded months earlier.
<Visa expires in 2
the student visa with which the boy had entered the United States had
only a few valid remaining days; moreover, he no longer had the
possibility to extend it for a further period. As he was not
interested to join the legion of foreigners who were irregularly in
the country, Marcos thought he had to prepare his return to his home
twenty three Marcos Ferrari had left his town in the Argentine
Province of Santa Fe to settle with relatives in the city of Buenos
Aires. The youth found the winds of the great metropolis stimulant
for a period of almost a year, during which he had held a series of
menial jobs in various mechanical motorcycles workshops, one of his
true passions until he was hired by his uncle to work with him .
However, after that period his adventurous spirit produced again to
him the familiar restlessness and Marcos ended up traveling without
any preconceived plan to Caracas, moved only by his desire to change
air, without greater knowledge of the situation Venezuela was facing.
Indeed, once he was there it was difficult to find a job that would
allow him to stay alive at least until he could raise money to
continue his journey, and he was about to hit the road with his
travel bag to tempt fate in Colombia when he met Elena.
Rodriguez was a Caracas thirty-eight years old lady,
recently divorced from an executive of a trading company that had
actually left her for a younger woman shortly before the divorce.
Elena enjoyed however a comfortable life in her hometown until due to
the dramatic drop in the international oil prices the country's
economic situation began to deteriorate rapidly. Elena met Marcos
when he served coffee to her at one of the many precarious jobs that
the boy had taken in his two-month stay in Caracas. She had been
attracted by the tall if somewhat ungainly silhouette of the young
man, his pale eyes and reddish hair. Elena got immediately to draw
the boy´s attention simply by pulling up her skirt in a way that
then made her reproach herself as shameless. Afterwards, as she paid
the consumption, the woman introduced a note with her phone between
the depreciated bolivars notes, with the result that in that same
night they had slept together at her house. Marcos had taken care of
all maintenance issues in the woman´s house and car for which he
managed to extend for another month his visa to stay in Caracas.
Meanwhile she began to sell all her properties in Venezuela getting
however a reduced revenue due to the economic crisis in the country
and decided to travel to the United States, where she already had a
resident visa obtained years before and kept valid since then. The
young man accepted excited the possibility of escorting her.