Many believe that human trafficking only occurs in other countries, but in reality Houston is a major hub for trafficking in the United States. Its bustling commercial sex industry and its proximity to major shipping routes makes Houston an ideal place for traffickers to exploit their victims; however, trafficking is not simply confined to the inner city. Illicit spas, massage parlors, and “tea houses” can be found all over the Houston area, including in residential neighborhoods and wealthy areas.
Click here to see a map of businesses that have been identified as probable sexually oriented businesses in Houston.
- Of over 300 identified probable sexually oriented businesses represented on the map, only 14 have licenses to operate.
- Many locations call themselves “spas”, “massage parlors”, “tea houses”, or “bath houses” when they may actually be brothels.
- Many establishments have been raided and/or shut down multiple times, only to reopen under new management or another name.
- Most establishments included on the map were identified through internet advertisements on websites such as Backpage.com.