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Subject In Sex Trafficking Documentary Sues Filmmaker

By Jennifer Brice

DENVER (CBS4) - A Denver woman, mentioned in a 2013 documentary about sex trafficking, filed a complaint initially suing both the filmmaker and Netflix.

The documentary named "Tricked" is a gritty, revealing film about the world of sex trafficking. It streams on Netflix. Much of the documentary was filmed in Denver and profiles local sex workers, sex victims, pimps, prosecutors and vice cops.

Tricked Netflix
(credit: CBS)

On Wednesday afternoon, CBS4 learned that the plaintiff voluntarily dismissed the complaint against Netflix.

Netflix is represented by attorney Hal Haddon. In an email, Haddon wrote, "The plaintiff voluntarily dismissed the complaint against Netflix yesterday, so Three Generations is the only remaining defendant."

Tricked Netflix
(credit: CBS)

The underage woman mentioned in that documentary says private facts about her life were publicly disclosed. The woman, who is named "Jane Roe" in the complaint to protect her identity, says she "suffered humiliation, anxiety, embarrassment, and social stigma as a result of the defendant's actions."

Tricked Netflix
(credit: CBS)

Roe is now in her 20s and living in Denver, according to her lawyer, Ahson Wali.

The complaint alleges that Denver Police Sgt. Dan Steele, who is heavily featured in the documentary, was involved in a criminal case with Roe's abusers and years later disclosed details during interviews aired in the documentary.

Tricked Netflix
(credit: CBS)

Steele, a 20-year police veteran, is locally and nationally recognized as expert in human and sex trafficking. He was honored with the prestigious Excellence in Law Enforcement Award back in 2015. His teams are credited with rescuing hundreds of girls from sex trafficking. For the past five years he's been assigned to the Lost Innocence Task Force of the FBI.

In the complaint, it says Steele disclosed personal photos of Roe, her first name, and how she was forced by her mother to do sex work. Roe claims she became aware of her information being exposed when a relative told her she had seen the movie last year.

CBS4 reached out to Steele, who says he can't comment on this lawsuit. Steele was never named as a defendant in the complaint. CBS4 reached out to Three Generations, and their attorney, but have not yet heard back.

The Denver Police Department says they are aware of the complaint and are investigating the allegations.

Jennifer Brice is a reporter with CBS4 focusing on crime and courts. Follow her on Facebook or on Twitter @CBS4Jenn.

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