RIVER FALLS, Wis. (WFRV) – A man from western Wisconsin has been charged with one count of labor trafficking for his alleged involvement in causing a woman to engage in forced labor for multiple years.
According to the Wisconsin Department of Justice (DOJ), between August 2020 and August 2022, 29-year-old Austin Koeckeritz, used force, threats of force, and coercion, to cause an adult woman to engage in forced labor for nearly two years.
The indictment was unsealed on January 19 and states the FBI Milwaukee Field Office and the River Falls Police Department conducted the investigation.
According to the Pierce County Jail custody list, Koeckeritz is being held on a $300,000 cash bond on a charge of 3rd Degree Sexual Assault.
Authorities say the charge of forced labor carries a maximum of 20 years in prison, up to five years of supervised release, and a fine of up to $250,000.
The FBI is asking anyone with information about Austin Koeckeritz to call the FBI Milwaukee Field Office at (414) 276-4684.
No other information was provided at this time.
If you or someone you know is a victim of human trafficking, please call the National Human Trafficking Hotline at 1-888-373-7888.