Sunday, July 31, 2011

Trafficking in Louisiana

Strategies to address human trafficking sought by Louisiana commission
Published: Thursday, July 28, 2011, 8:40 PM
By Ed Anderson, The Times-Picayune
An 18-member commission charged with finding ways for the state to better treat young people forced into prostitution or pornography got down to work Thursday, trying to identify ways to help the youths report the crime and receive treatment.
The Human Trafficking Study Work Group, created by a resolution sponsored by Sen. Willie Mount, D-Lake Charles, must make a report on comprehensive findings to Gov. Bobby Jindal and lawmakers no later than Feb. 1.
Evelyn Jenkins, director of child welfare for the Department of Children and Family Services and acting chairwoman of the group, said the top priorities to be addressed include examining laws in other states and on the federal level dealing with the "behavioral health ... and psychological issues facing minors" who are victims of human trafficking.
She said that group will seek input from victims, their parents and health-care providers to enhance the state's ability to address the problem on various levels, such as counseling, rehabilitation, education and job-training, as well as making the young people feel more secure from sexual predators.
Katherine Green, a representative of the Baton Rouge federal court's human trafficking task force and designee of Attorney General Buddy Caldwell on the panel, said a major problem is that no one knows how many victims of youth sexual trafficking are in the nation now.
She said the best estimate is that since 2009, there are about 100 victims who have come forward in the Baton Rouge-New Orleans area. "Nobody really knows," Green said. "That could be just a small percentage. ... It is a very sad situation" because young women - the typical victim of sexual trafficking, are reluctant to come forward for fear of retribution against themselves or family members.
She said many don't want to report the activities because they are not aware they are being exploited. "Their pimps may treat them better than anyone has ever treated them in their lives" by showing them attention and giving them gifts, Green said.
"Mom and dad may be the ones doing it (forcing them into sex trafficking) for money for their cocaine habits."
Bobby Gaston, a member of the panel representing the Louisiana Sheriffs Association, said some of the victims of sexual trafficking "are as young as 12 to 14. ... People need to know what the problem is."
Judy Benitez, representing the Louisiana Foundation Against Sexual Assault, said the statistics on human sexual trafficking in the state may not be reliable because "it is a relatively new crime. ... Some are throwaways, not runaways" who may never be seen again.
She said possibly 10 percent to 25 percent of the cases of trafficking are reported.
The state Legislature at its recent session made it a crime to aid or be involved with a scheme to traffic anyone under the age of 18.
The penalties call for a fine of up to $50,000, 15 to 50 years in jail or both. If the victim is under 14, the penalties are a maximum fine of $75,000 and a jail sentence of 25 to 50 years. The law was sponsored by Rep. Walt Leger III, D-New Orleans.

Thursday, July 28, 2011

81 Children Rescued in Raids on Trafficking Ring, Chinese Officials Say

This is not a US case (directly) but it has resonance on several levels: first that these babies could end up in the US, adopted by US parents. Second, that women and girls are still at risk for simply being female all over the world, not just in China, not just in the US. For more, see Nicholas Kristof's book: Half the Sky. Third, were this to happen in the US I do not think it would not be a ht case because of our definitions that require "labor or service". What do you think?

July 27, 2011

81 Children Rescued in Raids on Trafficking Ring, Chinese Officials Say

BEIJING — In a significant illustration of China’s illicit trade in babies, the Ministry of Public Security said Wednesday that the police had rescued 81 children from a major child trafficking ring that had operated throughout eastern China.

Xinhua, China’s official news agency, reported that 13 babies were rescued in the city of Handan in Hebei Province, ranging in age from only 10 days to 4 months. Most were girls, the news agency said.

More than 2,600 police officers from 14 provinces were deployed in a sting operation on July 20, which resulted in the detention of 330 suspects, the ministry said in a report posted on its Web site.

Another raid earlier this month broke up a cross-border child trafficking operation in China’s southern provinces of Guangdong and Guangxi, Xinhua reported. Eight children were rescued and 39 suspects, mostly Vietnamese, were arrested, according to Chinese media reports.

A senior official told People’s Daily, the Communist Party’s leading newspaper, that unless those who purchased children abused them, they might not be subject to criminal penalties.

“The cost of the crime of buying children is not great,” Liu Ancheng, deputy director of the ministry’s criminal investigation bureau, told the newspaper. He also blamed “the dreadful practice of buying and selling children in this country” on the traditional idea of the need for male offspring, especially in rural areas.

Michigan first state human trafficking charge!

Press Release: New Human Trafficking Unit Files State’s First Charges Under New Law

Michigan Department of Attorney General

Office of Communications


Copy of Press Release:

New Human Trafficking Unit Files State’s

First Charges Under New Law

Detroit Man, nicknamed “Gruesome,” Arrested in California; Faces 13 Criminal Charges for Enslavement, Sexual Exploitation and Abuse of Two Girls

LANSING— Attorney General Bill Schuette today announced his new Human Trafficking Unit has filed Michigan’s first criminal charges under its new human trafficking law. Sedrick Leman-Isaac Mitchell, 32, of Detroit, is accused of human trafficking and other crimes after the Attorney General’s office alleged he enslaved two young girls, forcing them to engage in prostitution in Detroit. The charges result from an investigation by Michigan State Police and the FBI through the Southeast Michigan Crimes Against Children Task Force.

"Modern day slavery happens in Michigan every day and it must be stopped," said Schuette. “I am committed to a new fight against this enslavement of our children. This is a warning for the criminals running these operations: Your time is up.”

“This case is the very first to be prosecuted under the state human trafficking law,” said Jane White, Director of the Michigan Human Trafficking Task Force. “We welcome the leadership and commitment of Attorney General Schuette and look forward to his partnership in the fight against human trafficking in Michigan.”

"This arrest is a huge step forward in Michigan's fight to combat human trafficking,” said Bridgette Carr, Director of the University of Michigan Law School Human Trafficking Clinic. “We must send the message in Michigan that all victims of human trafficking will be treated like victims and those who choose to exploit them will be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law. The leadership of Attorney General Bill Schuette is a welcome and necessary addition to the fight to combat human trafficking in Michigan."

Sedrick Leman-Isaac Mitchell, also known as “Gruesome” and “Roc,” is accused of enslaving two girls and forcing them to engage in prostitution on the streets of Detroit. The victims include 14-year-old and 15-year-old girls. Schuette alleges one 14-year-old was enslaved by Mitchell after he invited her to attend a party in July 2010. The child was then held captive in a house on Detroit’s east side for approximately two months. A 15-year-old girl was enslaved under similar circumstances from December 2010 to January 2011.

The victims were forced to engage in prostitution, with Mitchell allegedly collecting all of their earnings. When the girls did not earn enough money, it is alleged Mitchell would physically abuse the girls by slapping and punching them. In addition to the physical assaults, Schuette alleges Mitchell sexually assaulted the girls on several occasions. In one sexual assault incident, Mitchell allegedly held a gun to the 14-year-old victim’s head. During another sexual assault of the 15-year-old victim, Mitchell allegedly choked the girl when she resisted his advances.

Sedrick Leman-Isaac Mitchell has been charged by Schuette’s office with the following:

· Two counts of Human Trafficking – Threats of Physical Harm Causing Injury (Involving Criminal Sexual Conduct), a felony punishable by life in prison;

· One count of Criminal Sexual Conduct – First Degree (Personal Injury), a felony punishable by life in prison;

· Two counts of Criminal Sexual Conduct – First Degree (Relationship), a felony punishable by life in prison;

· One count of Conducting Criminal Enterprises (Racketeering), a 20-year felony;

· Two counts of Prostitution/Pandering, a 20-year felony;

· Two counts of Prostitution – Accepting Earnings, a 20-year felony;

· One count of Felonious Assault, a four-year felony;

· One count of Felony Firearm – Second Offense, a 5-year felony; and,

· One count of Felon in Possession of Firearm, a five-year felony.

Mitchell was arrested in Mojave, California on July 21, 2011 by local law enforcement. Schuette’s office has begun the process to have Mitchell extradited to Michigan to face the criminal charges announced today.

Human trafficking is modern day slavery and it is the second-largest and fastest-growing criminal industry in the world, after drug trafficking. Victims of human trafficking are in bondage through force, fraud or coercion, solely for the purpose of sex or labor exploitation. Children are especially vulnerable. According to the U.S. Department of Justice Bureau of Justice Statistics, 2,515 incidents of human trafficking were recorded nationwide between January 2008 and June 2010. Of those incidents, 1,016 involved the sexual exploitation of a child, 1,218 involved the sexual exploitation of adults, and 350 involved labor trafficking.

The Michigan law banning Human Trafficking (MCL 760.462a, et seq.) went into effect on August 24, 2006. The law was strengthened in 2010, with those changes taking effect on April 1, 2011. Updates to the law included: adding human trafficking to the list of predicate offenses that fall under the state racketeering law, authorizing additional court-ordered restitution for trafficking victims, and stronger penalties.

Schuette’s Human Trafficking Unit was created by reallocating resources in the Attorney General’s Criminal Division to put an increased focus on combating human trafficking in Michigan, a priority Schuette identified upon taking office in January of this year. Schuette expects the unit to work closely with local, state and federal law enforcement agencies to uncover and prosecute cases of modern-day slavery involving both children and adults.

A criminal charge is merely an accusation and the defendants are presumed innocent unless proven guilty.

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Language matters

Combating human trafficking requires a multi-faceted approach. We need law enforcement, legislators, prosecutors, lawyers, community members and the media. This article discusses a 15 year old found in Georgia who was being purchased for sex. In Georgia the age of consent for statutory rape purposes is 16, despite this fact the article still describes the child as "acting as a prostitute." Is a child who is too young to consent to sex old enough to be described as a prostitute? Why not focus on the behavior of buyers, what about a headline that states "15 year old being purchased for sex"? In order to move anti-trafficking efforts forward in America we must begin to put the spotlight on those who exploit and create demand, rather then solely on those who are being exploited.

Friday, July 22, 2011

New Awareness Campaign

Human Trafficking Awareness Campaign

U.S. Customs and Border Protection
has launched two public service announcements as part of the “Don’t Be Fooled” campaign—a public awareness campaign designed to educate citizens and encourage public vigilance to combat human trafficking within local communities, and invite others to join the fight against this form of modern-day slavery. The two public service announcements, titled “Masquerade” and “Bird Cage,” will begin airing July 25 in Florida, Georgia, North Carolina, and the Washington, D.C., metro area. Click the link above for links to the announcements.

Consider the facts of one case of human trafficking and forced labor:

In 2001 and 2002, Varsha's mother, known as "Mrs. Joti," arranged for Samirah, a 53-year old woman from Indonesia, to obtain an Indonesian passport and United States visa in order to travel to the United States to work in the Sabhnanis' home. Samirah, a rice vender who spoke no English, did not know what a visa was. . . . She traveled to the United States in February 2002 in the company of Mrs. Joti, who carried Samirah's passport . . . . Varsha Sabhnani took Samirah's passport and other related documents and kept them until approximately April 2007, about one year after Samirah's passport had expired. Mrs. Joti returned to her home in Indonesia shortly after delivering Samirah.

Samirah worked as a domestic servant for Varsha and Mahender Sabhnani from February 2002 through May 2007, even though the visa that Mrs. Joti obtained for her authorized Samirah to enter the United States solely as Mrs. Joti's employee and to work for her in this country only until May 2002. During her time with the Sabhnanis, Samirah was responsible for cooking, cleaning, laundry, and other chores at the couple's large three-story residence, which included about seven bedrooms, seven baths, and separate offices from which Mahender Sabhnani operated PVM International and Eternal Love Parfums . . . . Varsha told Samirah that her $200 per month salary was being paid to her daughter Lita in Indonesia. Lita was in fact paid only $100 per month. Samirah received no money herself.

The circumstances of Samirah's employment were more than severe. While at the Sabhnanis' home, Samirah . . . was required to sleep first on the carpet outside the bedroom of one of the children and then on a mat on the floor of one of the residence's kitchens. Samirah was not given adequate food to eat -- to the point that she was often forced by hunger to eat from the garbage. She worked for extremely long hours per day and was often deprived of sleep. . . . Various witnesses testified that Samirah wore “torn or tattered,” “messy" clothing, rags "used for cleaning the floor" and clothing that left her “private part . . . visible.” Tr. 1786, 3834.

Samirah was subjected to extremely harsh physical and psychological treatment in the Sabhnanis’ home. On one occasion sometime before 2005, for example, Samirah drank milk directly from a container, without using a glass; the incident was reported to Varsha Sabhnani by one of her daughters. Varsha responded by beating Samirah and pouring scalding hot water on her arm. At her mother's instruction, one of Varsha's daughters took a photograph of Samirah with the milk container. Varsha Sabhnani told Samirah that the photo would be sent to Samirah's family in Indonesia to prove that Samirah was a thief. The photo, which Varsha thereafter kept in a locked cabinet in a closet adjoining the Sabhnanis’ bedroom, was introduced into evidence at the trial. It depicts the discoloration on Samirah’s arm from the scalding.

The milk incident was not an isolated one. Samirah was beaten by Varsha Sabhnani with various household objects, such as a broom, an umbrella, and a rolling pin. She was punished for sleeping late, for not receiving permission to throw out the garbage, for stealing food from the trash, and for failing to clean the garage. Varsha threw boiling water on Samirah on at least three separate occasions. She also mutilated Samirah, pulling on Samirah’s ears until they bled, causing scabs and scars, and cutting Samirah with a knife, leaving scars on her face and various parts of her body. Wearing plastic supermarket bags on her hands, Varsha Sabhnani on more than one occasion pulled on Samirah’s ears and dug her fingernails into the flesh behind them, causing blood to trickle down Samirah’s neck. She punished Samirah for various alleged misdeeds by forcing her to eat large quantities of hot chili peppers until Samirah vomited or moved her bowels uncontrollably. Varsha forced Samirah to walk up and down flights of stairs many times in succession. Samirah was required to bathe several times in a row, sometimes with her clothes on, and was not infrequently made to work while wearing wet clothing. Varsha Sabhnani also cut Samirah's hair with scissors and shaved her pubic hair, threatening Samirah that if she resisted her children in Indonesia would be murdered by Mahender Sabhnani and by the couple's teenage son. Samirah “never fought back,” according to her own testimony, “because [Varsha Sabhnani] always said, mind you, if you fight me off, then you [will] be killed by the mister,” referring to Mahender Sabhnani. Tr. 1774. The abuse suffered by Samirah caused her to become so fearful that she would sometimes urinate on herself.


Subject to this recurrent abuse, Samirah often asked to return to Indonesia or to be “give[n] . . . away” to another person. Tr. 1881. When she did so, Varsha Sabhnani told her that she would have to pay money to make up for the expenses the Sabhnanis had incurred in bringing her to the United States. Varsha told Samirah that Samirah’s children would be killed if she escaped. Varsha also threatened Samirah that if she ran away, Varsha would falsely report to the police that Samirah had stolen food and jewelry and . . . have Samirah sent to prison.

United States v. Sabhnani, 599 F.3d 215, 225-27 (2d Cir. 2010) (footnote omitted) (affirming criminal conviction of forced labor, peonage, and involuntary servitude).

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Florida in the News Again...

Bay Area Lawmaker Strikes Back Against Human Trafficking

Tampa Bay has been identified as a hub for human trafficking activity by some officials.

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The 16-year-old mentally challenged girl was living a life of unimaginable abuse and daily degradation, said Hillsborough County Sheriff David Gee.

In a form of modern-day slavery, she was transported from one migrant farm worker camp to another, throughout Eastern Hillsborough County, where she was forced to commit sexual acts with anyone willing to pay her captor.

An investigation in 2010 by the Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office, U.S, Immigration and Customs Enforcement and the Clearwater/Tampa Bay area Human Trafficking Task Force led to the arrest of Mario Alberto Laguna-Guerrero, 25.

“This girl was rescued from a nightmare, which could only have gotten worse," said Gee. "The teamwork among law enforcement agencies cannot be underestimated when it comes to protecting children and the innocent. There is one less predator on the streets, and one more reason that this task force is so valuable."

If convicted as charged, Laguna-Guerrero faces a maximum penalty of life in federal prison.

That may be one human trafficker who’s now off the streets, said Gee. But there are more lining up to take his place.

According to the Florida Coalition Against Human Trafficking, human trafficking involves the commercial exchange and exploitation of humans including forced prostitution and pornography, involuntary labor, servitude and debt bondage.

It’s a growing problem worldwide, recently rising to the second most common criminal activity behind the illegal drug trade. Currently, there are approximately 27 million people enslaved throughout the world with 2.5 million located in the United States. Each year, 600,000 to 800,000 more people are being trafficked worldwide, according to the coalition.

Florida, and Tampa Bay in particular, has been identified as a hub for human trafficking activity.

That’s one of the reasons state Rep. Rachel Burgin, R-Riverview, got involved.

“Florida is one of the top three states for human trafficking, behind New York and California,” said Burgin. “And most of that activity is taking place right here in Tampa Bay.”

Burgin displayed a Department of Justice map. The map uses circles to indicate where incidents of human trafficking are most prevalent. One of those circles sits on top of Tampa Bay.

Burgin said she was unaware of the severity of the problem until she happened to attend a national conference in Washington, D.C.

“I was seated next to a woman who started an international organization to stop human trafficking,” she said. “She told me about her international work and the significant increase in human trafficking over the past few years. I was surprised to learn how pervasive the problem is. I began looking into it and discovered that Tampa Bay is a hub for such activity.”

In fact, seemingly innocuous storefronts along Kennedy Boulevard and Dale Mabry Highway are actually fronts for human trafficking operations, said Burgin.

“You see them all over the place, massage parlors with signs that say they’re open until 2 a.m. seven days a week,” she said. “What kind of legitimate massage parlor is open until 2 a.m.?”

Other signs indicate directions to a rear entrance so patrons can enter the establishment surreptitiously.

“In these places, women are brought in, usually staying for no more than six days, and forced to perform sexual acts,” said Burgin. “The businesses are well-known by law enforcement. The problem is law enforcement must actually catch them in the act in order to prosecute them. And that’s very difficult to do.”

Working with the Florida Department of Law Enforcement and Florida State University Center for the Advancement of Human Rights, Burgin authored a bill in 2009 designed to empower law enforcement.
In addition to increasing the penalties for those convicted of the crime, Burgin’s bill would require massage parlor employees to have identification on them at all times.

“One of the ways the traffickers hold these women hostage is by taking away their identities,” said Burgin. “Without a passport, visa or other documentation, these women can’t escape. They can’t travel, they can’t do anything.”

Her bill would require massage parlor employees to carry a valid U.S. passport, driver’s license or Employment Authorized Document. That would give law enforcement authorization to request identification, and determine who’s working illegally, she said.

That first year, Burgin’s bill passed the House but failed to pass the Senate. She reintroduced it last year, joining forces with Sen. Arthenia Joyner, D-Tampa. This time it passed the Senate but the House rejected it.

Its failure baffles Burgin.

“There are differing opinions on what’s important in Tallahassee,” said Burgin. “Because they don’t have human trafficking there, I think it’s not perceived as a big problem. It’s not an issue people want to talk about or even acknowledge it exists. But it’s a very big problem in Tampa Bay.”

Undeterred by the Legislature’s acquiescence on the issue, Burgin plans to reintroduce her bill during the 2012 legislative session. This time she believes the it will get the attention it deserves due to the national attention the issue is now receiving.

On June 27, U.S. Sen. Mark Rubio, R-Fla., issued a statement on human trafficking based on a recently released report from the U.S. Department of State. “This important report is a chilling reminder of how prevalent this dehumanizing practice is all over the world,” said Rubio. “I am also concerned that Florida is disproportionately affected by this scourge, requiring our own vigilance.

“With the input from Sen. Rubio, maybe it will become more of a priority,” said Burgin.

As law enforcement has discovered, a disproportionate number of the victims are from other countries, said Burgin.

“They’re either tricked into coming here with the promise of a job or they are sold into slavery by a relative,” said Burgin. “They come from all different countries – Asia, the Middle East, Central America, Africa and Europe. Every person’s story is different but they have one thing in common – they are being forced to work in unpleasant environments under duress.”

What’s especially disturbing to Burgin is the changing profile of the victims.

“It used to be most of the victims were in their 20s,” she said. “Now the biggest age group is 13 to 17 years old. It’s a horrible crime. And we need to find a way to protect these children.”

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Flight From Group Home Takes a Turn for the Worse

Sex trafficking: 12 accused of sex crimes involving minors

By Susan Jacobson, Orlando Sentinel

10:12 p.m. EDT, July 18, 2011

Two 15-year-old girls ran away from a group home in Highlands County and came to Orlando for a good time, Orange County sheriff's detectives say.

They met a couple of men in their 20s on a bus from Universal CityWalk to Orange Blossom Trail and went home with them. They drank alcohol, smoked marijuana and had sex with the men, investigators said.

The "fun" turned to terror, however, when half a dozen men subsequently raped one girl, and two men took the second girl to Miami, where they forced her into prostitution, detectives said.

The Sheriff's Office on Monday announced the arrest of nine men — including a convicted sex offender on probation — and one woman they say were involved. Deputies have arrest warrants for two other men.

"I think there are predators who go after naïve girls to take advantage of," said Anderson Ashby, the lead detective on the case.

The investigation began in February, when law officers in Miami contacted their counterparts in Orange County. Deputies learned that the girls, who were in the group home because of behavioral problems, including cutting school, ran away in late December.

During their visit to the Orlando area, they were taken to an abandoned house, where one girl was forced to have sex with six men, investigators said. The other girl had sex with two of the men, they said.

The first girl fled back to the group home after two or three weeks. She has not been cooperating with the prosecution because she has been blaming herself, deputies said.

The other girl was forced to have sex with three men in Miami before she was arrested. She is now back home with her mother in Lakeland, Ashby said.

The men were arrested on charges including sex trafficking, procuring a minor for prostitution and lewd or lascivious battery.

The woman, Martha Wilson, 23, of Orlando was arrested on a charge of interference with custody. Investigators say she allowed some of the sexual activity to occur at her home.

Deputies found a picture of one man, Craig Golden, 26, of Orlando, on one of the girl's cell phones, they said. He was posing with a phone in one hand and a gun in the other. Golden got out of prison in November after serving 13 months on drug charges. As a convicted felon, he cannot legally possess a gun.

Also arrested were:

•Guytembert Garcon, 23, of Orlando, who is on probation for a 2006 conviction for lewd or lascivious battery on a person between 12 and 15 years old.

•Olgens Alcide, 22, of Orlando, who is on probation for a 2009 conviction for armed robbery.

•John Peter Henry, 27, of Miami, who was released from prison in 2009 after serving a 13-month sentence for selling cocaine.

•Lachristophe (also spelled "Lachristoph") Smith, 29, of Orlando, who was released from prison in 2006 after serving about three years for burglary, grand theft and selling marijuana.

•Luc Louidor, 25, of Orlando.

•Brothers Leo David, 30, and Rodney David, 26, both of Orlando.

•Shayne Parsons, 25, of Orlando.

Two men still being sought were identified as Montavius Rakeem Postell, 20, and Boby Louis, 23, both of Orlando.

Detectives say Postell and Golden brought the girl to Miami to work as a prostitute.

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Olympic Concerns Across the Pond

Human traffickers could target Olympics, Home Secretary warns

Traffickers will use next year’s Olympic Games as a cover to smuggle in people, the Home Secretary has signalled.

Theresa May, the Home Secretary, warns human traffickers may target the Olympics.
Theresa May, the Home Secretary, warns human traffickers may target the Olympics. Photo: PA

The 2012 Games are likely to be a key target for criminal gangs who will look to take advantage of a larger than usual number of visitors heading to the UK.

Theresa May yesterday said working with other countries to combat human trafficking will be particularly important in the run up to the Games to help “respond quickly and appropriately to any potential increased risk of trafficking”.

The warning came as the Home Office yesterday launched a new human trafficking strategy.

It will examine tougher penalties for those guilty of smuggling and wider powers for confiscating their assets.

Police estimated that 2,600 people were trafficked for sexual exploitation alone in 2009 and fear around 300 children are smuggled in to the UK every year.

Damian Green, the immigration minister, said: “ they are already here, the Government said today.

Immigration Minister Damian Green said: “We are sending a message that the UK is not a soft touch for traffickers.

“We will pursue and disrupt trafficking networks overseas wherever possible to stop them before they ply their trade in the UK and then bring them to justice.

“These measures along with improved victim care arrangements will ensure that all victims – adults and children – receive care tailored to their specific needs.”

Peter Davies, chief executive of the Child Exploitation and Online Protection Centre, said: “Child trafficking is a terrible crime and can have devastating consequences for those affected.

“This commitment to enhance the coordinated efforts of law enforcement, government and the wider child protection community is a major step forward, as we all strive to improve the level of support to vulnerable and frightened child victims.”