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Monday, October 27, 2014

Clients must marry prostitutes or face jail – St Pete deputy


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Published time: October 27, 2014 14:58
Reuters / Sigit Pamungkas
Reuters / Sigit Pamungkas
A municipal lawmaker in Russia’s second-largest city has drafted a bill introducing heavy fines for the clients of prostitutes, but they’ll be forgotten if client agrees to marry the sex worker.
The initiative is from Olga Galkina who represents the pro-business Civil Platform party in the St Petersburg city legislature. She stressed that her bill was in response to the recent suggestion to make prostitution a criminal offence drafted by Vitaly Milonov, known for his anti-gay drive, and other campaigns bordering Christian fundamentalism.
In an interview with business daily Kommersant-St Petersburg Galkina said she wants to change the Russian Administrative Code and introduce fines of between 4000 and 10000 rubles ($95- $240)or up to 5 days of arrest for buying sex services. If clients know that prostitutes had been forced into this business the fines increase to 50-100 thousand rubles ($1200 - $2380) and the terms of administrative arrest to 10 or 15 days. The bill would also see convicted foreign nationals deported immediately after they pay the fines or their time of arrest ends.
The most interesting part of the bill is the possibility for clients to evade punishment altogether if they “marry the person that provided the sex services.”
In the explanatory note attached to the bill Galkina quotes international experience, saying that introducing responsibility for clients had helped to decrease the prostitution rate in Finland, Norway, Sweden and Iceland.
If the St. Petersburg city legislature approves the bill in two readings it would be sent to the Federal parliament with the possibility to become a national Russian law.
Law experts say that while the purpose of the bill is good it might face difficulties in real life as it would be very difficult to collect proof of the crime.
In further comments with Kommersant-St Petersburg Galkina said that in reality she advocated legalization of prostitution and drafted the controversial bill in order to start a public discussion on the issue.
http://rt.com/politics/199739-russian-prostitutes-marriage-bill/

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

18 women rescued in Canada-wide human-trafficking investigation: police

the star.com
Canada
News / Canada

A months-long investigation into human trafficking has led to the rescue of 18 women who were forced to work in the sex trade against their will.

Hundreds of women were interviewed by police from 26 departments as part of a Canada-wide human trafficking sting operation. This is a still from a Russia-Canada documentary on human trafficking.
Associated Producers Ltd. / CP
Hundreds of women were interviewed by police from 26 departments as part of a Canada-wide human trafficking sting operation. This is a still from a Russia-Canada documentary on human trafficking.
A months-long investigation into human trafficking has led to the rescue of 18 women who were forced to work in the sex trade against their will, police said Tuesday.
Nine people are facing 33 charges, including forcible confinement, making and distributing child pornography, assault, trafficking in persons, withholding or destroying documents, living off the avails, uttering threats, obstructing police and failing to comply with court orders and conditions of bail and probation.
Ontario Provincial Police Sgt. Peter Leone said vulnerable groups, like newcomers to Canada, are often the targets of exploitation.
“These (18 victims) are individuals who were preyed upon, that were very vulnerable and certainly exploited,” he said. “A lot of promises can be made to people if they come along, and they don’t realize until they go with them, what they’ve gotten themselves unfortunately into.”
Twenty-six police forces were involved in the operation on Oct. 1 and 2, including those in Edmonton, Calgary, Regina, Saskatoon, Winnipeg, Halifax, Quebec City, Toronto and other parts of Ontario.
They interviewed hundreds of women some as young as 15 since January, focusing on hotels, motels and massage parlours along major thoroughfares in 30 cities and towns across the country, police said. Many of the women had been threatened with violence, extortion and drug dependency, among other forms of coercion by men.
Ontario Provincial Police and the Winnipeg police said in a news release that a 12-year-old Winnipeg girl was among the people rescued during Operation Northern Spotlight II, but Winnipeg police later said that the girl was not part of the group.
The girl was interviewed by police in a separate investigation unrelated to the human-trafficking probe, said Sgt. Cam Mackid of the Winnipeg Police’s Counter Exploitation Unit.
According to Ontario’s Durham Regional Police Service, some of the women were being forced to perform sexual acts multiple times a day for paying male customers.
It said it interviewed 31 sex trade workers, with an average age of 26, and investigators believe nine were under some level of control.
“Although the Criminal Code section refers to this activity as ‘Human Trafficking,’ the public may better understand this issue as ‘sex slavery,’” the police force said in a release.
“Although many of the women appear to be making their own decisions to participate for financial gain, investigators found several teenagers and young women were being forced to perform through threats of violence, physical intimidation, drug dependency and other forms of coercion.”
Part or all of the money from those sexual acts were kept by their adult male controller or pimp, it said.
Leon said police provided the women they interviewed with information about support agencies in their area that could assist them, Leon said.
“Hopefully we’ve made a difference in their lives and given them a fresh start as well,” he said.
Note to readers: This is a corrected story. An earlier version had police saying a 12-year-old Winnipeg girl was among the 18 people rescued in a human-trafficking investigation. Winnipeg police later said that she was part of a separate investigation unrelated to the human trafficking probe.
http://www.thestar.com/news/canada/2014/10/07/girl_12_among_18_rescued_from_crosscanada_sex_trade_ring.html

Monday, October 6, 2014



Hungarian Gay Sex Trafficking Ring Busted in South Florida: SAO


NEWSLETTERS


Three men are facing sex trafficking charges after authorities say they lured young gay Hungarian men to South Florida and forced them into prostitution. NBC 6's Dan Krauth reports.
Three men are facing sex trafficking charges after authorities say they lured young gay Hungarian men to South Florida and forced them into prostitution.
Gabor Acs, 31, Viktor Berki, 28, and Andras Janos Vass, 24, are facing charges including human trafficking, racketeering and deriving support from prostitution, the Miami-Dade State Attorney's Office said Friday.

The investigation dates back to October 2013, when Homeland Security received a tip that three men in Miami Beach were possible victims of human trafficking.
Prosecutors said the men, ages 20-22, were lured to the United States with the promise of quick, easy and legal cash, and they were brought to New York before arriving in Miami.

Hungarian Gay Sex Trafficking Ring Busted: SAO

[MI] Hungarian Gay Sex Trafficking Ring Busted: SAO
Three men are facing sex trafficking charges after authorities say they lured young gay Hungarian men to South Florida and forced them into prostitution. NBC 6's Dan Krauth reports.
Once in Miami, the men engaged in prostitution or performed sex acts in front of a webcam for 18-20 hours a day, prosecutors said. All the payments went to Acs, Berki and Vass.
The victims told investigators that the suspects "used various techniques to keep them enslaved, including isolating them from others, withholding their travel and identification documents, and using financial manipulation to keep them in constant debt," the State Attorney's Office said in a statement.
The suspects rarely let their victims leave their shared apartment and they were told it was because they could not speak English and they were not familiar with the area, authorities said.
Acs, Berki and Vass threatened and psychologically intimidated the men and took their identification documents and locked them in a safe, authorities said. The victims also experienced levels of violence from the suspects.
Neighbors said they saw several luxury cars stop at the suburban home. At one point, they allegedly had a sign on the front door advertising $5 car washes, which is illegal in a residential neighborhood. Police said the car wash was a front for having so many cars pull into the house.
"The overall attractiveness of our South Florida area is equally attractive to sex traffickers," State Attorney Katherine Fernandez Rundle said in a statement. "These individuals may have come from a different country to exploit the vulnerable but they used the same basic trafficker tools of fear and intimidation to make their profits."
Two of the suspects, Berki and Vass, were arrested in New York. Acs was arrested in Miami and was being held at Krome Detention Center Friday, officials said

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