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updated: 9/16/2012 7:04 AM

Cook County gets $500K to fight human trafficking

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Associated Press

CHICAGO -- A half-million dollars in federal grant money means a program to combat human trafficking can continue in Cook County.

Cook County State's Attorney Anita Alvarez's office said Friday it would receive $500,000 for the project from the U.S. Justice Department. The money applies to the next two years and will provide training, programming and help for at-risk children and the victims of trafficking.

Alvarez's office will work with federal prosecutors to investigate and prosecute human trafficking cases. The money also pays for a staffer to monitor trafficking cases in the courts and make sure victims are connected with counseling and support services.

The Cook County State's Attorney's office was one of four law enforcement agencies in the U.S. to receive the grant money when it was first awarded in 2010.

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