Stories

The IRE Resource Center is a major research library containing more than 27,000 investigative stories.

Most of our stories are not available for download but can be easily ordered by contacting the Resource Center directly at 573-882-3364 or rescntr@ire.org where a researcher can help you pinpoint what you need.

Search results for "prostitution" ...

  • ProPublica: Unprotected

    Katie Meyler leveraged the internet and a compelling story to launch a charity to educate vulnerable Liberian girls and save them from sexual exploitation. ProPublica revealed how, as Meyler gained international plaudits and fundraised over $8 million, girls as young as 10 were being raped by founding staff member Macintosh Johnson, with whom Meyler had a sexual relationship. The charity then misled donors and the public about what had happened, failed to safeguard all his possible victims even once they knew Johnson had AIDS when he died, and later abandoned to prostitution at least one of the girls who had testified against him in court.
  • The Intercept: Group that opposes sex work gave money to prosecutors’ offices – and got stings against johns in return

    This was an investigative piece that relied heavily on documents obtained through FOIA requests and revealed that prosecutors around the country were receiving millions of dollars in funding from an anti-prostitution advocacy group that required them in return to conduct raids on brothels and stings against sex work clients. In particular, internal documents showed that in exchange for nearly $200,000 in funding, the advocacy group essentially required the King County prosecutors’ office and their law enforcement to erroneously label criminal cases they were pursuing as sex trafficking even though there was no evidence of trafficking in these cases. At one point, the advocacy group was even allowed to edit a press release issued by the prosecutors about these cases to include terms like “sex trafficking.” Legal scholars said that the King County prosecutors may have violated their own professional codes of conduct that restricts them from making sensationalistic “extra-judicial comments that have a substantial likelihood of heightening public condemnation of the accused.” My article was the first to show that the independent judgement of law enforcement in King County and other jurisdictions may have been compromised by the strings-attached funding from Demand Abolition, the anti-prostitution group.
  • Disorderly Conduct

    The story explores and exposes misconduct within an undercover unit of the Minneapolis Police Department, behavior that included everything from excessive force to engaging in sexual contact with prostitution suspects — and that regularly compromised prosecutions.
  • Schoolgirls for Sale

    Japan's obsession with cutesy culture has taken a dark turn, with schoolgirls now offering themselves for "walking dates" with adult men. Last year the US State Department, in its annual report on human trafficking, flagged so-called joshi-kosei osanpo dates (that's Japanese for "high school walking") as fronts for commercial sex run by sophisticated criminal networks. In an investigation, VICE News host Simon Ostrovsky brings the readers to Tokyo's busiest neighborhoods, where girls solicit clients in their school uniforms, to a concert performed by a band of schoolgirls attended by adult men, and into a café, where teenage girls are available to hire by the hour. But the true revelations come behind closed doors, when schoolgirls involved in the rent-a-date industry reveal how they've been coerced into prostitution. (https://news.vice.com/video/schoolgirls-for-sale-in-japan)
  • The Brothel Next Door

    Merrill College student reporters did what state officials had promised but failed to do: a comprehensive assessment of human trafficking and law enforcement’s response to it. The result was “The Brothel Next Door,” the first in-depth, data-based analysis of the problem in Maryland. The report was published online by Capital News Service and by local news outlets, including in Spanish by The Washington Post’s El Tiempo Latino. Five classes collaborated on the project: Media law classes submitted public records requests to every county. Capstone classes searched court files for details about how victims become trapped, traffickers operate and authorities respond. They obtained chilling audio of victims’ testimony and a state database never before released. Their analysis found authorities had uncovered extensive evidence of trafficking but struggled to win convictions. They conducted scores of interviews to understand why.
  • Why Did The Washington Post Name The White House Volunteer Accused In Prostitution Scandal?

    The Washington Post broke several details about the United States Secret Service this year and received high praise. But The Washington Post's explosive Oct. 8 allegations about a former White House volunteer soliciting a prostitute during a 2012 trip to Cartagena, and unsubstantiated claims of a White House cover-up, deserved scrutiny. The Huffington Post looked deeply at the alleged "evidence" and published private correspondence between editors and attorneys to show that much of what was promoted as new information on Oct. 8 had been rebutted more than seven months earlier. It was later revealed that a key source for the The Post had prostitution allegations against himself, raising more questions about the paper's decision to publish such potentially damaging claims.
  • Harsh Treatment

    In Illinois, hundreds of juvenile state wards are assaulted and raped by their peers each year at taxpayer-funded residential treatment centers as authorities fail to act on reports of harm and continue sending waves of youths to the most violent facilities, the Tribune's "Harsh Treatment" investigation found. Prostitution becomes a fact of life at facilities where experienced residents introduce others to pimps, escort websites and street corners. And thousands of kids flee to the streets, where some sold drugs and sex to survive and others broke into homes and mugged passers-by. Dozens have never been found. The reporters gathered thousands of pages of highly protected juvenile case files, successfully petitioned the Cook County juvenile court for access to delinquency files and through relentless FOIA appeals pried free police and state monitoring reports on violent incidents inside the facilities.
  • The Fighters: A CNN Freedom Project Documentary

    "The Fighters" is a feature-length documentary looking at human trafficking in the Philippines. The two-year investigation into child prostitution, domestic servitude and allegations of fraud surround the country largest anti-slavery organization, stirred a massive response in the Asian nation.
  • Stripping Funds

    After months of public records requests, we finally obtained thousands of heavily redacted receipts by the Port of Oakland. We honed in on one for $4,500 on a poorly copied receipt. It was from a business in Houston. A quick online map search showed us the business was a notorious strip club. Another receipt led us to another business closer to home. A karaoke bar suspected to be a house of prostitution where Port clients were being entertained at the public's expense. Several nights of surveillance brought to light another discovery. Oakland Police Officers were making regular visits to this club while on duty.
  • The Secret Service Scandal

    As President Obama was dressing to attend a formal gala of 430 world leaders in Cartagena, Colombia, last April, a story broke over a U.S. Secret Service agent not paying an agreed upon $800 fee for sex with a prostitute, leading to the dismissal of 11 secret service agents for their debauchery at Colombia’s Hotel Caribe. It was the largest scandal in the 147-year-old history of the Secret Service, exposing a pervasive macho culture of hard-working, hard-partying agents in an agency whose common image is one of stoned-faced, buttoned-down agents focused solely on protecting the President.