News Bulletin Feb 2015

Merton Against Trafficking: Trafficking News Feb 2015
26 February 2015
Abused, imprisoned Vietnamese slave away in UK's cannabis farms
Criminal defence lawyer Philippa Southwell points to the thick ring binders that line her desk in a
small office above a bookie's and fast food joint in south London. More folders are neatly stacked on
the floor, in a bookcase and a metal filing cabinet, a hint of her growing caseload. In recent years,
Southwell has specialised in representing a particular kind of client: the mainly young men and boys
who are trafficked to Britain from Vietnam to labour in cannabis farms. Often from poor families,
many regard the West as a gateway to prosperity. Others leave weighed down by a duty to provide
for parents, brothers and sisters back home. The Home Office (interior ministry) estimates there
were up to 13,000 victims of slavery in Britain in 2013. Victims are most often from Albania, Nigeria,
Vietnam and Romania. Many of the Vietnamese are children when they set off, travelling thousands
of miles by foot, boat and lorry over months, sometimes even years, before reaching British shores.
Click here to read more.
Eric Pickles names new Rotherham Council leaders
Five government commissioners have been selected to run Rotherham Council after a report found
the local authority "not fit for purpose" over its handling of child sexual exploitation in the town. Sir
Derek Myers, Stella Manzie, Malcolm Newsam, Mary Ney and Julie Kenny will head the council until
31 March 2019. They replace the cabinet following the Casey Report's criticism of its woeful
response to child exploitation. Last year the Jay Report found 1,400 children had been subjected to
abuse. Communities Secretary Eric Pickles has also promised £250,000 to help set up an outreach
project to help victims. He said the commissioners would remain in control of Rotherham Council
until the end of March 2019, but added that powers would likely be passed back to the local
authority throughout that period. Click here to read more.
24 February 2015
Trailing the traffickers, UK police in new role rescuing slaves
Inside one of Britain's biggest special anti-trafficking operations, police officers surrounded by files,
forms and photographs attempt to unravel a complex network of crime. On a whiteboard, the faces
of men, women and children are encircled by a web of ticks, checklists and scribbled diagrams with
names, addresses and nationalities scrawled in black. Operation Retriever was set up in September
after police in northern England were alerted to a Slovakian woman who had been tricked into
travelling to Britain and then forced to marry a man threatened with deportation back to South Asia.
The woman had been sold for thousands of pounds by a trafficking ring in a case that sparked alarm
about slavery in modern Britain and the scale of the hidden problem. "Modern slavery is not (being
chained up)," said Detective Inspector Jim Faulkner, who leads the team at Greater Manchester
Police, the largest force outside London. "It's being coerced and feeling compelled to work
somewhere because the victims think they have no other choice and the traffickers have such
control that they live in fear." Since the Slovakian case, his seven detectives have uncovered eastern
Europeans trafficked to the UK for forced labour in factories and many more in sham marriages. Click
here to read more.
23 February 2015
BBC investigation into child migration
Click here to watch the Newshour programme.
21 February 2015
Slavery bill debate: government's refusal to end tied visa blasted by campaigners
David Cameron’s pledge to make Britain the world leader in tackling modern slavery will face further
scrutiny on Monday, when the government is accused of prioritising looking tough on immigration
above preventing the abuse of foreign workers. Less than three years after the prime minister
unveiled his plans to tackle human trafficking, the government is blocking attempts to abolish the
system that ties domestic workers to their employers, leaving them vulnerable to exploitation. Since
April 2012 each migrant workerhas been tied to one employer upon entering the UK, meaning they
cannot move jobs because they are unable to renew their visas or change employer if the
relationship sours. Campaigners say the situation must be overturned as it allows abusive employers
to demand extremely long hours and withhold pay and food, while placing workersin danger of
economic, physical and sexual abuse. Statistics show a recent increase in the exploitation of
domestic workers, a categorisation that includes cleaners, nannies and cooks, who cannot seek
justice without the fear of deportation if they leave their abusive employers.Click here to read more.
19 February 2015
Trafficked individuals face severe physical and mental health problems
Victims of human trafficking for sexual exploitation and forced labor have severe health concerns,
say researchers at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine in the United Kingdom and
the International Organization for Migration. The study was announced on Feb. 18, 2015, and is
published in the journal The Lancet Global Health. Health outcomes: Participants who worked long
hours, had bad living conditions, restricted freedom, and experienced threats or severe violence
were more likely to report mental health issues; The most common physical health problems are
dizzy spells, headaches, and back pain; 61.2 percent reported symptoms of depression; 42.8 percent
reported anxiety symptoms; 38.9 percent reported PTSD; 5.2 had attempted suicide in the previous
month; 22 percent were seriously injured at work by deep cuts, injuries to the eyes, neck, and back,
and/or the loss of a body part, and only 28 percent of this group reported receiving medical care.
Click here to read more.
UK visa system allows 'slavery'
The UK visa system is enabling unscrupulous employers to treat foreign workers as modern-day
slaves, a BBC investigation has found. BBC Radio 4's Face the Facts spoke to dozens of workers who
were paid little or nothing, were not allowed out and were sometimes abused or beaten. The
situations come from "tied" visas - meaning the right to be in the UK can be withdrawn by the
employer - and "transit" visas on fishing boats. Ministers said a review was under way. Transit visas
are being used to bring in recruits to the fishing industry who have no right to set foot on dry land and therefore no access to UK employment rights. Face the Facts found this led to some fishing
workers spending weeks at a time at sea, sometimes unpaid, sleeping in cramped conditions, often
physically and verbally abused. With tied visas, employees must stay with the employer they arrived
to work for - so if they are mistreated and run away, they are likely to be deported. Click here to
read more.
17 February 2015
Man, 41, jailed for 'sex slavery' of women in Bolton and Blackburn
A Hungarian man who trafficked three young women forcing them into sexual slavery at his familyrun brothel has been jailed. Alex Breier, 41, of Bolton, was sentenced at Manchester Crown Court to
five years 10 months on Monday after admitting trafficking for prostitution. Six other people
received either suspended jail terms or a conditional discharge for running a brothel. Det Ch Insp
Rick Jackson said the girls lived a "nightmare existence". The girls, aged 18 and 19, were forced "into
a penniless life of sexual slavery and servitude", he added. "He [Breier] would beat these women if
they did not obey him, controlling them physically and psychologically to the point where they felt
powerless to free themselves from his violent grip." At one point, Breier threatened to report them
to police for working as prostitutes, said police. "It may seem astonishing but such was their fear and
insecurity that this 'threat' had the desired effect." Click here to read more.
15 February 2015
Sex traffickers' juju spells to be 'reversed' as part of radical new scheme to encourage young
African victims to come forward
Britain’s anti-slavery commissioner is examining radical new plans to prosecute sex traffickers by
“reversing” the juju spells that terrorise many of their victims into staying silent. More than 100
Nigerian women were identified last year as having been trafficked into sexual slavery with their
obedience ensured by magic rituals that threaten them with infertility or death if they reveal what
has happened to them. The appeal court have heard several cases of young girls and women jailed
for travelling on fake papers after being too scared to tell police that they had been trafficked into
Britain. Earlier this month, a judge quashed the conviction of a teenager after it emerged that she
had been repeatedly raped, subjected to exorcism and juju rituals, and tricked by a woman into
working as a prostitute in Britain. The level of terror instilled by juju led British police to spend two
years trying to dispel the fears of women so they could give evidence in the first case of its kind in
Europe, in 2011. Oath-taking and rituals are a major part of juju, a powerful belief system that
underpins the world view of millions of Africans. Rituals include the taking of blood, hair and
clothing, and swearing oaths to gods who have the power of life and death. Click here to read more.
Asians recruited to Northern Ireland brothel
BBC News NI has uncovered a brothel luring undocumented Asian women to Belfast with the
promise of work to pay off people smugglers. A classified advert in the free newspaper, the UK China
Times, available throughout the UK, was used to recruit the women. It is followed by a UK mobile
number that leads to a brothel in Belfast. The brothel manager, known as Lisa, who keeps half the
earnings, said she was "trying to help" the women. BBC News NI enlisted the help of a Chinese
journalist based in London. Posing as a potential recruit, she called the number in the advert and
spoke in Mandarin to Lisa. After asking her age, and if she was fat, Lisa agreed to employ the
journalist for sex work. She told her to fly to Belfast, bringing high heels, school girl and nurses
outfits, and warned against packing too many condoms in her bag to avoid suspicion from the
authorities. Lisa told the journalist that she had run two brothels but now only had one. When they
met, Lisa discussed a range of sexual activities and said: "When you make money, I make money,
too. It's £70 per half hour, £100 per 45 minutes. £130 for an hour. Understand? We go fifty-fifty."
Click here to read more.
12 February 2015
Government action to tackle slavery in supply chains
The Minister for Modern Slavery and Organised Crime Karen Bradley today (Thursday 12 February)
announced the launch of a consultation with businesses to encourage transparency in supply chains.
Shoppers may be hunting for a bargain but, unbeknown to them, the cheap products they find could
be the result of modern slavery. Of the 35 million people estimated by the Global Slavery Index to be
enslaved worldwide, the majority are victims of exploitation in activities such as manufacturing,
construction and agriculture. Under the Modern Slavery Bill, large companies will for the first time
have a legal duty to disclose to the public the steps they have taken to ensure modern slavery does
not have a place in their business – from the shop floor to the factory floor, anywhere in the world.
This is the latest measure introduced by the government to strengthen the landmark provision in the
Modern Slavery Bill. Click here to read more. Click here for the modern slavery and supply chains
11 February 2015
Four in 10 teenage girls 'pressured into sexual activity'
Academics have warned that more needs to be done to address issues of sexual violence in school,
as reasearch reveals that many schoolgirls feel pressured into having sex. The study found that many
of the 13-17 year-olds surveyed had experienced physical attacks or emotional abuse from
boyfriends, and in some cases, some girls reported being raped. Academics have warned that this
violence is often "unrecognised", leaving young people with "little support of appropriate services".
The NSPCC is now calling on the Government to ensure teenagers get a clearer message about
healthy relationships as part of the curriculum. Today's study has been described as "one of the
biggest of its kind". Researchers across Europe surveyed 4,500 children and undertook 100
interviews with young people, in order to gauge levels of sexual coercion. Academics from the
Universities of Bristol and Central Lancashire found that teenage girls in England reported the
highest levels of pressure, with around one in five also saying they had suffered physical violence
and intimidation from boyfriends. Click here to read more.
Folkestone sexual exploitation trial hears how five people targeted 14-year-old Slovakian girl
A teenage Slovakian girl has told the Folkestone trial into sexual exploitation how she was targeted
within a day of coming to the UK. The prosecution has alleged that Roman Bodnar, 33, from Leeds;
Josef Dirda, 30, from Folkestone Road, Dover; AliceKalejova, 37, from Dover Road, Folkestone;
Marian Cisar, 22, from Athelstan Road, Folkestone and Jolana Rohalova, 40 from Brockman Road,
Folkestone, were involved in the girl’s sexual exploitation. Dressed in a white top and speaking
through an interpreter, the youngster gave her evidence by CCTV from a room in Canterbury Crown
Court. She told how she came to Folkestone with her family and the following day met Cisar who
was with another man. “They asked me where I was from, how old I was, whether I knew how to
earn money for myself and whatever.” She told him she was 14 and had just moved to the town and
was asked whether I knew how to earn some money. She told the jury that she responded: “I gave
an answer to their question that I am not a whore! That I am a normal woman, I don’t do bad things
and I did not wish for them to treat me like that.” Prosecutor Eleanor Laws QC told the jury at the
start of the trial: “The Crown say that these defendants were in different ways and to differing
degrees involved in this girl’s sexual exploitation and at various locations in Kent “The male
defendants used her for their own sexual gratification. The Crown say she was targeted, supplied
with drugs, sometimes threatened, assaulted and used by the defendants as a prostitute.” Click here
to read more.
10 February 2015
Man jailed for child sexual exploitation in Rotherham
A Rotherham man has been jailed for child abduction and trafficking offences after luring three girls two aged 11 and one 13 - to his flat from a park. The girls were playing in a park in Eastwood when
Vejuhadin Ghorbani, aged 37, of Park Mount, Rotherham, lured them into his car last September,
plied them with alcohol and trapped them in his flat. He offered one girl £20 for sexual favours and
made repeated references to sexual acts. The youngsters were reported missing when they failed to
return home that night and a large-scale police search was launched. The girls escaped from left
Ghorbani’s flat the following morning after finding his keys while he slept. Ghorbani admitted two
counts of abduction and one count of trafficking for sexual exploitation involving the three girls. He
was jailed for three years. Click here to read more.
Hotels and police tackle child exploitation
Police and hoteliers are set to hold their first meeting aimed at tackling child sexual exploitation. The
Hotel Watch scheme in Cherwell will see police officers and hoteliers hold regular meetings to share
information and concerns. The scheme, which will see regular meetings every six months and more
frequent meetings if needed, is open to all hotel and B&B owners in Cherwell, including those in
Bicester, Banbury and Kidlington. One of the aims of Hotel Watch is to allow police to better inform
hoteliers about child sexual exploitation and what to do if they suspect it is happening in their
premises. Hotel Watch has been set up in the wake of the Operation Bullfinch convictions in 2013.
An east Oxford hotel was named in court as the location used by gang members to abuse teenage
girls. Hotel owners wanting to find out more about Hotel Watch can contact PC Allen at or Cherwell & West Oxfordshire Neighbourhood Watch
Coordinator Deborah Hextall on or via telephone on
101. Click here to read more.
9 February 2015
Rotherham abuse: Researcher's warning 'ignored in 2002'
A former Home Office researcher says a bullying culture at Rotherham Council led to her warnings of
child sexual exploitation being suppressed in 2002, years before action was finally taken.A report
this month by government official Louise Casey concluded the council was not "fit for purpose".
The way many in the authority denied a 2014 finding children were exploited between 1997 and
2013 was criticised. The council says it is investigating researcher Adele Gladman's claims. At the
time of the claims, Ms Gladman was undertaking research for a Home Office pilot. But she found her
findings about the scale of sexual exploitation in Rotherham were also met with denial. Click here to
read more.
Woman bishop condemns trafficking
The first female Church of England bishop has highlighted the "evil" of human trafficking at her first
official public appearance in her new role. Supporting Manchester Airport's Travel Safe Week, the
Rev Libby Lane said the problem would not go away without "commitment and struggle". The
initiative, in its third year, trains the 19,000 people who work at the airport every day to be aware of
the tell-tale signs of human trafficking and help protect vulnerable passengers. According to
children's charity Unicef, 1.2 million children are trafficked every year and human trafficking is said
to be the second largest source of illegal income worldwide, exceeded only by drugs trafficking.
Working with organisations such as the Stop the Traffik charity and the Border Force, the campaign
will also raise awareness with passengers via posters and leaflets displayed throughout the airport.
Click here to read more.
Forty-five 'rescued from human traffickers' in Northern Ireland
Forty-five potential victims of human trafficking were rescued in Northern Ireland last year,
according to the National Crime Agency (NCA). They said they were subjected to domestic servitude,
labour or sexual exploitation, the NCA said. One girl and three women said they had been sexually
exploited. Twenty-two of those rescued were Romanian, 10 were from China and others were from
Albania, Vietnam and Lithuania. In all, 30 adults said they had been exploited for cheap or free
labour - 23 of them were men and seven were women. The figures, published in the National
Referral Mechanism Statistics End of Year Summary 2014, are 10% higher than in 2013. Staff at
Belfast International Airport have been trained by human rights organisation, the International
Justice Mission (IJM), to spot trafficking victims. Click here to read more.
6 February 2015
New law on sale of sex 'could cut human trafficking'
A call has been made for the purchase of sex to be made illegal. Churches and other religious
organisations have written to the first minister saying doing so could have a significant effect on
human trafficking and exploitation. They said sex trafficking is a form of modern slavery which is a
crime against humanity. But their letter claimed it exists because of a demand for commercial sex
which is exploited and profited from. Prof Watson praised the Scottish government for introducing
the Human Trafficking and Exploitation (Scotland) Bill.But she said: "We believe that there is an
important element missing from the Bill and would urge you to consider supporting an
amendment."She added: "It would be good to see Scotland incorporating the Nordic model, with a
funding package supporting women to leave prostitution, into its anti-trafficking legislation."Sex
trafficking does not just exist because its victims are vulnerable - it exists because there is a demand
for commercial sex that traffickers can exploit and profit from. Click here to read more.
5 February 2015
20 man grooming gang charged with child prostitution relating to 12 girls
The men have been charged as part of the ongoing operation Sanctuary, Northumbria police’s
thirteen-month investigation into child sex offences and the predominantly Pakistani heritage
grooming gangs plaguing northern England. A number of the men appeared in court today and will
appear again in two weeks. The investiagation, which began when two women came forwards to
police with complaints about their mistreatment has now charged a total of 31 men. The force is
now investigating the cases of 12 women, some of whom are only 13 years old. The Chronicle
newspaper reported the comments of investigation leader Deputy Chief Constable Steve Ashman,
who said the number of victims was likely much higher. He said: “To date, this part of the
investigation has involved speaking to over 100 potential complainants, a dozen of whom have been
identified as victims in relation to today’s charges”. He issued a warning against those who might
make assumptions about the ethnic or religious background of the attackers based on the names of
the accused, saying: “Some people or groups may try to use Operation Sanctuary to build
resentment. Our community has a history of harmonious relations and is one of tolerance. Anyone
experiencing hate crime should report it to police and be reassured we will investigate thoroughly.
Click here to read more.
4 February 2015
New Zealand judge Lowell Goddard to lead abuse inquiry
New Zealand High Court judge Lowell Goddard has been named as the head of a new inquiry into
historical child sex abuse in England and Wales. The inquiry will have statutory powers and a new
panel, Home Secretary Theresa May told the House of Commons. Mrs May said she was determined
to "expose despicable crimes". Since the original child abuse inquiry was set up last July, two
chairwomen have resigned amid concerns over their links with the establishment. Mrs May said
Justice Goddard was "as removed as possible from the organisations and institutions that might
become the focus of the inquiry". Peter Saunders, chief executive of the National Association for
People Abused in Childhood, said Justice Goddard would "enhance the whole credibility of the
inquiry". Justice Goddard, who was appointed to the New Zealand High Court in 1995, said she was
"committed to leading a robust and independent inquiry". The Auckland-born judge has previously
led an inquiry into police handling of child abuse cases in New Zealand. Click here to read more.
3 February 2015
Police officer accused of having sex with underage girls in Rotherham
A police officer and two councillors have been accused of having sex with underage girls in
Rotherham, the South Yorkshire town at the centre of a child sex abuse scandal which lasted 16
years. These claims have emerged on the day that long awaited findings from an independent
inspection of the local authority are due to be published. The report is expected to strongly criticise
the council, which risks being stripped of its powers. Complaints against the two Rotherham
councillors are understood to have been sent to the National Crime Agency, which is investigating
child-sex crimes in the town, according to The Times. One of the councillors is still serving, it is
understood. Allegations against the police officer, who is also said to have regularly passed
information to abusers targeting vulnerable children for sex, have separately been referred to the
police watchdog by the South Yorkshire force. A second officer is accused of neglect in his duty
because he allegedly failed to take appropriate action after receiving intelligence about his
colleague’s conduct. The claims are being assessed by the Independent Police Complaints
Commission. Click here to read more.
Lochaber hotel owner accused of human trafficking
Former Lochaber hotelier Shamsul Arefin faces eight charges under the Asylum and Immigration Act
involving four alleged victims at a number of locations, including a hotel in the north, where he is
accused of assault. The 47-year-old was due to stand trial before a sheriff and jury at Fort William
Sheriff Court in March. However, the venue is likely to be changed because it is now expected to last
up to three weeks, which cannot be fitted in around other court business at the Lochaber town’s
court. The charges, which include bringing four people into the UK with intent to exploit them, are
said to have been committed at Stewart Hotel, Duror, near Appin, Argyll, elsewhere in the UK and in
Bangladesh. Click here to read more.
25 February 2015
Danish human trafficking operation nets 92
Ninety-two people have been arrested in Denmark on suspicion of human trafficking and fraud.
Reports say a major police operation took place on the islands of Zealand and Lolland-Falster Those
being held are mainly Romanian citizens along with a Danish lawyer and Danish accountant. Ten
people are accused of human trafficking and the others of fraud. It’s understood the Romanians
detained were victims of a human trafficking operation.
17 February 2015
Iraqi women trafficked into sexual slavery - rights group
Up to 10,000 women and girls in Iraq have been abducted or trafficked for sexual slavery,
prostitution or ransom, rights groups said on Wednesday, as they called for the Iraqi government to
crack down on crimes against women. Campaigners estimate some 14,000 women have been killed
since the U.S.-led invasion of 2003, and many women and girls - including children as young as four have been raped in that time. Some women have been so traumatized that they have committed
suicide, according to a report by Minority Rights Group International and the Ceasefire Centre for
Civilian Rights. The authors say trafficking in Iraq has "mushroomed" in recent years and that the
militant Sunni group Islamic State (ISIS) has become a major actor in the buying and selling of girls.
Click to read more.
16 February
Escape from North Korea: 'I was sold into slavery and forced to have an abortion'
During the United Nations Commission of Inquiry into human rights abuses by the North Korean
regime, Ji Hyunah retained her composure perfectly. Indeed, no one would ever have guessed at her
ordeal. Yet, this young woman was forced to eat frogs and insects to survive in prison. She'd seen
her father disappear in 1998 and has no idea what happened to him. She was twice trafficked and
sold to Chinese men, twice repatriated to North Korea and had to endure an abortion without
anaesthetic. Yet, throughout her testimony to the UN - and during our conversation in the lobby of a
hotel in Seoul, where she has finally found freedom - the 35-year-old never appeared visibly moved
by her experiences. When I comment that she appears remarkably mentally strong, she leans her
head to one side. She then tries to explain just what it takes to survive in North Korea to someone
who has never seen the horror of the inside of the Pyongyang regime's prisons. "We had to be
strong," she begins. "We had no choice. Click here to read more.
6 February 2015
‘Outrageous’: Saudi diplomat who kept workers in ‘slavery’ immune from law
A Saudi diplomat who was accused of trafficking two women and treating them like slaves has been
told he will not have to compensate them because he is protected by diplomatic immunity. Titin
Suryadi and Cherrylyn Reyes alleged they had been treated as domestic slaves, working up to 17
hours a day and being paid below minimum wage by Jarallah al-Malki and his wife. The Court of
Appeal recognized that the decision “may seem unfair,” but insisted that the need to respect
diplomatic immunity outweighed the women’s claim. Zuber Yazdani, a solicitor who assisted in the
case, said the decision was “outrageous.” Click here to read more.
Indian activist's car vandalized after "Shame the Rapist Campaign"
An Indian activist who started an online video campaign to shame rapists said on Friday that her car
had been vandalized and she had received emails containing pornographic images. Sunitha Krishnan,
co-founder of the anti-trafficking charity Prajwala, started the "Shame the Rapist Campaign" earlier
this week by posting two videos on the Internet that showed men raping women. Just minutes after
she announced the campaign on Indian television on Friday morning her car had its rear window
smashed, she said. Krishnan later said she had received around 20 emails containing pornographic
images during the course of the day. The activist, who works on rehabilitating victims of human
trafficking, was informed on Thursday of the two graphic videos by an acquaintance who said he had
received them through popular messaging application WhatsApp. The videos are believed to be six
months old. "I edited the videos, blurred the identity of the victims, but fully exposed the identity of
the rapists," Krishnan, who herself is a rape survivor, told Times Now news station. "I posted it on
Facebook and Twitter and started the 'Shame the Rapist Campaign' to trace and track these six
rapists." Click here to read more.
Royal pride for trafficking trust
HUMAN trafficking and the devastating impact it has on women and girls is to be tackled by a charity
associated with the Prince of Wales. Charles announced, during a dinner in support of the British
Asian Trust, that the organisation would be launching an anti-trafficking fund to target the problem.
The new fund for India will build on work which the Trust has already been doing to support
vulnerable girls affected by violence and abuse. The British Asian Trust was founded in 2007 by a
group of British Asian business leaders at the suggestion of Charles, and it serves as a “social fund’’
supporting charities within the areas of education, health and livelihoods in Bangladesh, India,
Pakistan and Sri Lanka. Click here to read more.
5 February 2015
Climate change pushes India's poorest children into slavery - Satyarthi
Disasters resulting from climate change are pushing poor Indian families into poverty so deep that
they are lured by traffickers into selling their children into bonded labour or prostitution, Nobel
Peace Laureate Kailash Satyarthi said on Thursday. "I have witnessed many incidents where the
children became the worst victims of environmental disasters caused by climate change and these
kind of things," Satyarthi told Reuters TV on the sidelines of a conference on climate change. "It has
resulted in displacement of the parents, and eventually the children are compelled to become child
labourers or even child prostitutes or child slaves because they lose their traditional livelihood." The
latest report from the U.N. Panel on Climate Change predicts a rise in global temperatures of
between 0.3 and 4.8 degrees Celsius (0.5 to 8.6 Fahrenheit) and a rise of up to 82 cm (32 inches) in
sea levels by the late 21st century. Scientists say India is likely to be hit hard by global warming. It is
already one of the most disaster-prone nations in the world and many of its 1.2 billion people live in
areas vulnerable to hazards such as floods, cyclones and droughts. Click here to read more.
4 February 2015
Police use sex trade's own online tactics to arrest hundreds
A sting operation led by an Illinois sheriff, who once went after a website that allowed ads for
prostitution, ended on Super Bowl Sunday with the arrests of hundreds of men around the United
States who did not realize the online ads they were responding to had been posted by police. In all,
the ninth "National Day of Johns Arrests" resulted in the arrests of 570 men. Of those, 408 were
taken into custody after answering fake ads placed in Another 40 were arrested as a
result of fake ads posted on Craigslist. Among the police departments to participate was the one in
Phoenix, just a few miles from where the Super Bowl was played — and where authorities say
officers arrested 22 so-called johns as well as several women who told police they'd been trafficked
to the area in the days leading up to the big football game. Click here to read more.
3 February 2015
Church-led research will investigate links between human trafficking and FTSE 100 companies
A pioneering piece of academic research aims to uncover the links between human trafficking and
the global activities of the UK’s FTSE 100 companies – with a view to highlighting best practice so
that lives can be saved. The research is being motivated by a concern that FTSE 100 companies may
inadvertently become involved in human trafficking through links with suppliers around the world.
Rachel Parry, Global Relations Director for the mission agency Us (formerly USPG), which is helping
to fund the research, explained: ‘Human trafficking is a highly profitable global trade – more
profitable than the drugs trade. People who have been trafficked – typically those from poor or
vulnerable communities – can end up as slave labour which can be embedded within the supply
chains utilised of many well-known companies. Our research will dig deep into the phenomenon of
human trafficking, taking as our focus the supply chains of the FTSE 100 companies. We want to
explore how human trafficking could be a part of the picture. We want to see FTSE 100 companies
better informed to help them ensure there is as little risk as possible that their supply chain is
somehow touched by the traffickers’ trade.’ Click here to read more.
Calls to US trafficking hotline rise 26% led by sex victims
A human trafficking hotline in the United States reported a 26 percent increase in calls last year with
the vast majority from victims of the sex trade, a leading anti-trafficking organization said on
Tuesday. More than 5,000 cases of human trafficking were reported in 2014 to the National Human
Trafficking Resource Centre hotline operated by the non-profit Polaris which attributed partly the
rise to greater awareness about people living as slaves. Of these the majority, 71 percent, related to
sex trafficking while 16 percent were about labour trafficking and 4 percent involved both. Nine
percent of trafficking cases were not identified. Click here to read more.
Will the new International Labour Organisation Protocol and Recommendation make a difference?
At the International Labour Conference in June this year, governments, workers and employers
adopted a new Protocol against forced labour, supplemented by a Recommendation, which has
been hailed around the world as a landmark treaty to protect human rights. This recent
development in the treaty-making is worth noting, since some of other key multilateral negotiations
appear stalled. The new Protocol confirms that obligations existing under Convention No. 29 (1930)
to supress forced or compulsory labour, including if as an end result of human trafficking, include
obligation of prevention, protection of victims, providing with access to appropriate and effective
remedies, such as compensation, and effective sanctioning of perpetrators (Articles 1-4). The
accompanying Recommendation No. 203 on supplementary measures for the effective suppression
of forced or compulsory labour provides further normative guidance on how to give effect to
obligations under Convention No. 29. Click here to read more.