As a virgin, Pross was a profitable commodity. Nicholas reports that virgins bring in hundreds of dollars for brothel owners. Virgins are also in high demand by men with AIDS who believe having sex with a virgin will cure them. By the time she escaped, her virginity had been sold four times. "They stitched me up three times," she says.

Enslaved girls are also forbidden to request condoms, leaving them vulnerable to STDs, AIDS and pregnancy. Pross says she became pregnant twice. "The second time they waited until I was four months pregnant before they gave me the abortion," she says.

Pross says when she asked for a few days of rest, her eye was gouged out with a piece of metal. When her eye became infected, the brothel considered her too mutilated to be worth anything and left her on the streets. An organization called Somaly Mam Foundation, founded by a former sex slave, stepped in to help Pross reclaim her life. Pross also received an operation to repair her eye. It was not successful, but there is hope for another surgery. "Pross is just such an incredibly courageous, inspiring woman," Nicholas says.


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