Sunday, August 24, 2008

Amnesty International Presents Most Comprehensive Picture to Date of Trafficking in Scotland

From the BBC:

August 19, 2008

A modern-day slave trade is in operation across Scotland, new research has suggested.

Human rights charity Amnesty International said Scotland had 13.5% of the UK's trade in people.

This was despite Scotland having less than 10% of the population.

Amnesty said it used figures from police, councils, voluntary groups and other services to present the most comprehensive picture to date of the problem of human trafficking.

The report, Human Trafficking - Scotland's 21st Century Slaves, said Scottish police raided more than 50 premises, resulting in 35 arrests and 59 people being dealt with as victims of trafficking during its specialist Operation Pentameter 2.

Trafficking cases have been found in Edinburgh, Glasgow, Dumfries and Galloway, Falkirk, Grangemouth, Stirling and Tayside. They involved victims from Lithuania, Slovakia, Nigeria, China, Estonia, Somalia, Thailand, Guinea and Russia.

Amnesty International UK director, Kate Allen, said: "To date, most attention has been given to the plight of women trafficked into the sex trade, but we have also found evidence of trafficking into Scotland for domestic and agricultural labour.

"The case information we have been given also shows there are different methods of trafficking and different routes into Scotland.

"We have come across an example of marriage being used as a mechanism of trafficking women into Scotland for sexual exploitation. And we have seen cases of trafficked persons being recovered at the port of Stranraer."

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