The definition of human trafficking has changed since the first reports in 1994. The U.S department of state began to collect reports on trafficking across borders as a severe violation of human rights. Its’ office to monitor and combat trafficking in persons originally focused on the sexual exploitation of women and girls smuggled by international prostitution. Over the years the definition has broadened to cover anyone recruited, transported, transferred, harbored, and compelled to work in prostitution, domestic service, agriculture, construction work or factory sweat shops, by means of coercion, force, abduction, fraud or deception. Any commercial sex act performed by a person under age 18 is considered human trafficking, regardless of whether force, fraud, or coercion is involved. (Karmen, 2012)
Characteristics are fraudulent recruitment, exorbitant travel and recruitment fees, the withholding of the victim’s visas and other identifying documentation, controlling and limiting the victim’s movements, threatening deportation, threatening to harm the victim or his/her family, and physically harming the victim. These frequent traits of the trafficking experience can be seen in any nation regardless of geographical location or whether the nation is considered first, second, or third world. Women and girls make up 56% of persons trafficked for the purposes of forced labor while men and boys make up 44%. In terms of those trafficked for the purposes of forced commercial sexual exploitation, women and girls make up 98% and men and boys comprise 2%. Lastly, children constitute 40–50% of the overall forced labor population. (http://search.proquest)
include homeless individuals, runaway teens, displaced homemakers, refugees, job seekers, tourists, kidnap victims and drug addicts and children. After drug dealing, human trafficking is tied with arms dealing as the second largest criminal industry in the world, according to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. And with profits totaling about $32 billion yearly, it is the fastest growing industry. (Johnson, T. D. (2010).) Federally funded task forces, led primarily by local law enforcement agencies, investigated 2,515 incidents of suspected human trafficking between January 2008 and June 2010. Although most incidents involved allegations of sex trafficking, 350 incidents involved allegations of labor trafficking in unregulated industries (e.g. drug sales, forced begging, or roadside sales) and/or more commercial industries (e.g. hair salons, hotels, and bars). Among the incidents with sufficient data quality, 30 percent were confirmed to be human trafficking, 38 percent were confirmed not to be human trafficking, and the remaining incidents were still open at the end of the study period. Law enforcement agencies reported 144 arrests. Of the 87 victims identified as foreign nationals, 21 received special visas and 46 applicants had pending visas or the visa status was unknown. The task forces identified 527 confirmed human trafficking victims and 488 confirmed suspects during the study period. Among the confirmed incidents, sex trafficking victims were overwhelmingly female (94 percent), compared to confirmed labor trafficking victims (68 percent female). About 13 percent of confirmed sex trafficking victims were 25 or older, while more than half (62 percent) of the confirmed labor trafficking victims were 25 or younger. Four-fifths of victims in confirmed sex trafficking cases were identified as U.S. citizens (83 percent), while most confirmed labor trafficking victims were identified as undocumented aliens (67 percent) or qualified aliens (28 percent). Based upon cases where race was known, sex trafficking victims were more likely to be white (26 percent) or black (40 percent), compared to labor trafficking victims, who were more likely to be Hispanic (63 percent) or Asian (17 percent). Most of the confirmed suspects were male (81 percent). More than half (62...
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