The owner of a private jet company was arrested Saturday and charged with multiple counts of sex trafficking after being caught by an undercover officer for allegedly sex trafficking children throughout New York City.
Paul Alexander, 57, was arrested and charged with “multiple counts of Sex Trafficking of a Child, Attempted Sex Trafficking of a Child, related counts of First and Second Degrees of Promoting Prostitution, and two counts of Endangering the Welfare of a Child,” according to a press release by the New York attorney general’s office.
“The initial investigation began in March after a female minor reported Alexander to the NYPD, alleging that Alexander sexually abused her and other underage girls, and promoted them for prostitution to other men,” the release said.
Pope Francis calls for universal ban on ‘so-called surrogate motherhood’
Pope Francis called for a universal ban on surrogacy, likening the practice as an unborn child “turned into an object of trafficking.”
“I consider despicable the practice of so-called surrogate motherhood, which represents a grave violation of the dignity of the woman and the child, based on the exploitation of situations of the mother’s material needs,” Francis said in a speech to the Holy See on Monday.
The “uterus for rent” process, as Francis has called it, was estimated to bring in $14 billion in the U.S. in 2022, and is projected to grow to a $129 billion market by 2032. National Review reports Individual surrogacies can cost anywhere from $60,000 to $200,000 plus in the U.S. Rising infertility rates, an increase in the number of fertility clinics, and “sedentary lifestyles” contribute to surrogacy’s recent popularity, according to Global Market Insights.
“A child is always a gift and never the basis of a commercial contract,” Francis continued. “Consequently, I express my hope for an effort by the international community to prohibit this practice universally.”
Surrogacy is already banned in many European countries. In the United States, commercial surrogacy, or for-profit surrogacy, is legal in some states, and the practice has been used by celebrities who are very public with their decision to use surrogacy.
Altruistic surrogacy, the method by which a woman carries another person’s child for no official compensation, is legal in the United Kingdom, Australia, Canada, Hong Kong, South Africa, Greece, and Iceland, according to the National Institutes of Health.
The speech was about threats to peace and human dignity. “A child is always a gift and never the basis of a commercial contract,” Francis continued. “Consequently, I express my hope for an effort by the international community to prohibit this practice universally.”
Francis also listed Russia’s war on Ukraine, the Israel-Hamas war, climate change, and increased weapons production as great threats to peace on Monday.
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