Locked Away: Human Trafficking of At-Risk Adults

Source: California Elder Justice Coalition

Published: 2023


Webinar Recording 

Additional Resources mentioned during the webinar:

  • False Imprisonment VideoFrom the Elder Abuse Guide for Law Enforcement (EAGLE) website, this video was shown during the webinar
  • Resident QuestionnairePlease use this as a guide when questioning and interviewing victims of Benefits Trafficking. Some questions may not apply to the specific situation and may be omitted. 

Each day, older adults and adults with disabilities are being trafficked for their government benefits such as Social Security and Veterans’ benefits. Recruitment by traffickers happens through hospitals, jails, homeless shelters, mental health providers, and legitimate licensed care facilities. Victims are often locked away, living in deplorable conditions, robbed of their money, and unable to reach out for help. Learn how to spot the signs of this emerging type of trafficking and how to protect at-risk adult victims.


Anna Thomas is the manager of the Division of Aging Services – Forensic Special Initiatives Unit and most recently a Forensic Specialist with the Georgia Bureau of Investigation Crimes Against the Elderly and Disabled Task Force (CADE). CADE’s mission is to protect elder and disabled adults from abuse, neglect, and exploitation, prevent abuse, neglect, and exploitation of elder and disabled adults, and to prosecute offenders. Currently, her work with the CADE Task Force centers on training primary and secondary responders how to recognize and respond to elder and disabled adult abuse, researching gaps in current victim services, developing new laws to protect vulnerable adults, and public outreach. Her most recent projects are the launch of state-wide Elder Abuse Multidisciplinary Teams (MDTs) and raising awareness of Benefits Trafficking.

This webinar is made possible by a grant from California Health Advocates Senior Medicare Patrol.

Link: Locked Away: Human Trafficking of At-Risk Adults

Topics: Financial Abuse, Legal, Prevention/Intervention

Access: Web-based

Intended Use: Self-directed Learning

Audience: Advocates, Legal/Law Enforcement

Level: Intermediate