Human Trafficking – Things to Know!
The United Nations defines human trafficking as, “the recruitment, transportation, transfer, harboring, or receipt of persons by improper means (such as force, abduction, fraud, or coercion) for an improper purpose including forced labor or sexual exploitation.” In other cases, a person consents to being smuggling. This is considers human smuggling – which is related to human trafficking but a different crime. “Human trafficking involves the consent of the person(s) being smuggled. These people often pay large sums of money to be smuggled across international borders. Once in the country of their final destination, they are generally left to their own devices. Smuggling becomes trafficking when the element of force or coercion is introduced.”
As stated in the Trafficking in Persons Report, June 2004, slave traders prey on vulnerable woman and children, who are often forced into prostitution. Traffickers gain their trust through coercion and trickery. "Very often these ruses involve promises of marriage, employment, educational opportunities, or a better life."
Most of the information available on human trafficking is not complete and/or accurate as number of victims is unknown and most goes unreported. From the information reported:
· 62% of victims originated from Latin America (El Salvador 28% and Mexico 20% )
· 97 % of these victims were female
· 97% of human trafficking is sexual exploitation; 18% forced labor
· Worldwide, almost 20% of all trafficking victims are children.
· Between 2001 - 2005, the United States investigated 555 human trafficking suspects, and by 2005, 78 cases had been terminated with 75 convictions
Global baseline data on trafficking patterns
According to the Global ReportFemale offenders have a more prominent role in trafficking in persons than in other crimes. The capacity to detect trafficking victims increased during the reporting period – the number of victims detected increased by 27% between 2003 and 2006 (in 71 selected countries). Female victims represented, on average, between 65 and 75% of all victims detected between 2003 and 2006; child victims between 15 and 25%; and male victims around 15%.
Global baseline data on legislation
According to the Global Report, before 2003, 35% of the countries had legislation and 65% did not. As of November 2008, 80% of the countries had legislation and 20% did not. By November 2008, 17% of countries had a specific offense criminalizing only some forms of trafficking. At least 20% of the countries with a specific offense on trafficking in persons also use other offense to prosecute trafficking cases.