Edmonton man arrested on human trafficking, sexual assault charges

Felicien Mufuta, 37, is wanted by the Alberta Law Enforcement Response Team's human trafficking and exploitation unit. . Courtesy, ALERT

An Edmonton man has been arrested after an Alberta-wide warrant went out for his arrest Wednesday morning.

Felicien Mufuta, 37, was wanted by the Alberta Law Enforcement Response Team’s human trafficking and exploitation unit on charges of trafficking in persons, sexual assault, procuring, advertising sexual services, material benefit — trafficking and breach of release conditions.

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“ALERT believes this suspect preyed on some of our society’s most vulnerable people, allegedly controlling them through violence and withholding their identity documents,” said Staff Sgt. Lance Parker with the ALERT human trafficking unit in a news release Wednesday morning.

The investigation began after ALERT said a woman contacted the Edmonton Police Service in February to report she was being forced to work in the sex trade and was sexually assaulted. The woman is now receiving support and specialized care resources, according to ALERT.

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Read more: 1 arrested, 2 wanted on Canada-wide warrants in sex assault, human trafficking investigation: ALERT

Officers attempted to arrest Mufuta on March 4 when a south Edmonton home was searched, but ALERT said they were unable to locate the suspect.

In an update early Wednesday afternoon, ALERT said Mufuta was arrested as he was returning to his home in Edmonton’s Empire Park neighbourhood.

ALERT believes there may be additional victims and is encouraging others to contact police. Survivors of sex trafficking can also call 211 for help.

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