Nearly 2,000 people were arrested in fiscal year 2016 as a result of human trafficking investigations launched by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s Homeland Security Investigations branch. Last year’s figures are the highest on record, according to a statement issued Monday evening.

In the seven years since former President Obama declared January the National Slavery and Human Trafficking Prevention Month, HSI has tracked its efforts to tackle the underground industry. The number of arrestees for involvement in the illegal trade and exploitation of people for commercial gain has continued to rise.

In its inaugural year, HSI took 300 people into custody. That number more than tripled to 938 in FY 2011. The following year saw 967 arrests, but doubled to 1,877 in FY 2013. The next year had 1,770 arrests and FY 2015 saw 1,437. From Oct. 1, 2015 through Sept. 30, 2016 (the standard fiscal year), HSI picked up 1,952 people.

More than 9,200 people have been arrested since Obama’s 2010 proclamation. The numbers have risen through the years, including the number of people convicted — approximately half of those arrested.

“HSI special agents work tirelessly to disrupt criminal trafficking networks, and just as importantly, to assist the victims of this terrible crime,” Acting ICE Director Daniel H. Ragsdale said in a statement. “ICE will continue to work with our counterparts at home and abroad to educate the public to recognize signs of trafficking and provide the crucial services needed to aid in the recovery of those impacted by this heinous act.”

HSI said it identified more than 400 trafficking victims as a result of last year’s investigations.

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