Trafficking of children is the recruitment, transportation, transfer, harboring, or receipt of children for the purpose of exploitation.
Exploitation includes forcing children into prostitution or other forms of sexual exploitation, forced labour or services, slavery or practices similar to slavery, servitude, or the removal of organs. For children exploitation may include also, illicit international adoption, trafficking for early marriage, recruitment as child soldiers, for begging or as athletes (such as child camel jockeys or football players), or for recruitment for cults.
According to international legislation, in the case of children the use of illicit means—such as use of force or other forms of coercion, of abduction, of fraud, of deception, of the abuse of power or of a position of vulnerability—is not relevant in determining whether an act is a crime, because a child can not legally give informed consent.
It is a form of human beings as defined by the UN Protocol to Prevent, Suppress and Punish Trafficking in Persons, especially Women and Children. It is also one of the worst forms of child labour as defined by the ILO convention 182.
Child trafficking is a crime under international law and under the national legislation of many countries.
- Protocol to Prevent, Suppress and Punish Trafficking in Persons, Especially Women and Children, supplementing the United Nations Convention against Transnational Organized Crime (UN General Assembly, 2000)
- Convention concerning the Prohibition and Immediate Action for the Elimination of the Worst Forms of Child Labour or Worst Forms of Child Labour Convention (ILO, no. 182, 1999)
Under both of the above-mentioned instruments, any person of less than eighteen years of age is considered to be a child.
Under the law of the United Kingdom it is illegal to traffic anyone for sexual exploitation under sections 57 to 60 of the Sexual Offences Act 2003. It makes it an offence to traffic a person, into, out from or internally within the UK if that person “intends to,” or “believes that another person is likely to do something” “during or after the journey and in any part of the world.” A person found guilty of a trafficking offence is liable to a prison sentence of a maximum term of 14 years. Section 72 of that Act empowers the Crown Prosecution Service to go after child abusers who exploit minors in foreign countries as it makes it an offence for a British citizen or resident in the UK to commit any sexual offence in another country provided it is also against the domestic laws of that country.
United States Federal law criminalizes sex trafficking of children under Title 18 U.S.C. 1591 and Title 18 U.S.C. 2421-2423. Section 1591, a civil rights statute, makes it illegal to “recruit, entice, harbor, transport, provide or obtain by any means a person” knowing that either the person will be compelled through “force, fraud or coercion” to submit to a sex act, or that the person is under 18 years of age and will likewise be forced to commit a sex act. Sections 2421-2423, part of the 2003 PROTECT Act, criminalizes transport of minors for sex acts. It also criminalizes travelling to engage in illicit sex in another country. This provision of the law empowered federal prosecutors to address American’s exploitation of minors in foreign countries.
- ^British-born teenagers being trafficked for sexual exploitation within UK, police say | Society | The Guardian
- ^ uefa.com
- ^ “Sexual Offences Act 2003”. Published by the Government of the UK, (Office of Public Sector Information). http://www.opsi.gov.uk/acts/acts2003/ukpga_20030042_en_1.
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