Government the Trafficking Victims Protection Thesis

Pages: 42 (11509 words)  ·  Bibliography Sources: 25  ·  File: .docx  ·  Level: Doctorate  ·  Topic: Criminal Justice

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TVPRA (2008)

"The new and amended criminal provisions of the 2008 TVPRA took effect on December 23, 2008. The core human trafficking offenses which are forced labor and sex trafficking are codified, respectively, at 18 U.S.C. § 1589 and 1591, and provide, in relevant part:

§ 1589. Forced labor

(a) Whoever knowingly provides or obtains the labor or services of a person by any one of, or by any combination of, the following means

(1) by means of force, threats of force, physical restraint, or threats of physical restraint to that person or another person;

(2) by means of serious harm or threats of serious harm to that person or another person;

(3) by means of the abuse or threatened abuse of law or legal process; or (4) by means of any scheme, plan, or pattern intended to cause the person to believe that, if that person did not perform such labor or services, that person or another person would suffer serious harm or physical restraint, shall be punished as provided under subsection (d).

(b)Whoever knowingly benefits, financially or by receiving anything of value, from participation in a venture which has engaged in the providing or obtaining of labor or services by any of the means described in subsection (a), knowing or in reckless

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disregard of the fact that the venture has engaged in the providing or obtaining of labor or services by any of such means, shall be punished as provided in subsection (d).

§ 1591. Sex trafficking of children or by force, fraud, or coercion

(a) Whoever knowingly

Dissertation or Thesis complete on Government the Trafficking Victims Protection Assignment

(1) in or affecting interstate or foreign commerce, or within the special maritime and territorial jurisdiction of the United States, recruits, entices, harbors, transports, provides, obtains, or maintains by any means a person; or (2) benefits, financially or by receiving anything of value, from participation in a venture which has engaged in an act described in violation of paragraph (1);

knowing, or in reckless disregard of the fact, that means of force, threats of force, fraud, coercion described in subsection (e)(2), or any combination of such means will be used to cause the person to engage in a commercial sex act, or that the person has not attained the age of eighteen years and will be caused to engage in a commercial sex act, shall be punished as provided in subsection (b).

(c) In a prosecution under subsection (a)(1) in which the defendant had a reasonable opportunity to observe the person so recruited, enticed, harbored, transported, provided, obtained or maintained, the Government need not prove that the defendant knew that the person had not attained the age of eighteen years." 5

Mann Act

"The Mann Act, passed in 1910 as the White Slave Traffic Act, prohibits the transportation of individuals across state lines for purposes of engaging in prostitution or other criminal sexual activity. See 18 U.S.C. § 2421 and 2423. The Mann Act has separate provisions relating to adult and minor "transportees":

18 U.S.C. § 2421 (Adults)

Whoever knowingly transports any individual in interstate or foreign commerce, or in any Territory or Possession of the United States, with intent that such individual engage in prostitution, or in any sexual activity for which any person can be charged with a criminal offense, or attempts to do so, shall be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than ten years.

18 U.S.C. § 2423 (Minors)

A person who knowingly transports an individual who has not attained the age of eighteen years in interstate or foreign commerce, or in any commonwealth, territory or possession of the United States, with intent that the individual engage in prostitution, or in any sexual activity for which any person can be charged with a criminal offense, shall be fined under this title and imprisoned not less than ten years or life." 5

Travel Act

"Title 18, U.S.C. § 1952, known as the "Travel Act," in essence federalizes the crime of operating a prostitution business. It prohibits, in relevant part, anyone from:

[T]ravel[ing] in interstate or foreign commerce or us[ing] the mail or any facility in interstate or foreign commerce, with intent to . . . promote, manage, establish, carry on, or facilitate the promotion, management, establishment, or carrying on, of any unlawful activity, [including] any business enterprise involving . . . prostitution offenses in violation of the laws of the State in which they are committed or of the United States.

18 U.S.C. § 1952(a)(3) and (b).

The Travel Act is similar to the Mann Act in that it does not require a showing of compelled prostitution. It does require a showing of a "business enterprise" that was involved in prostitution, which has been interpreted to mean "a continuous course of conduct" as opposed to "isolated, casual or sporadic activity." The Travel Act, in contrast to the Mann Act, also requires the actual carrying on of the prostitution business as opposed to the mere intent to do so. Like the Mann Act, there is no statutorily mandated minimum sentence where adult transportees or victims are involved. The maximum sentence under the Travel Act is only five years (unless death results), as compared to ten years under the Mann Act. The Travel Act, however, offers a distinct advantage over the Mann Act in that it proscribes the use of "any facility in interstate or foreign commerce," such as a telephone or the internet, to carry on the prostitution business. See 18 U.S.C. § 1952(a).11 Thus, under the Travel Act, physical transportation or travel of the person who performs the prostitution is not required." 5

Alien Smuggling, Harboring and Transportation

"There are various immigration statutes that can be applied to trafficking conduct that involves illegal aliens like (8 U.S.C. § 1324(a) (alien smuggling, harboring and transportation). The obvious advantage of these statutes is that, because they are directed solely at illegal immigration activity, they do not require any showing of compelled labor or commercial sex acts. For this reason, they can be used in trafficking cases to supplement trafficking charges, thereby maximizing the chances for a conviction. In addition, the immigration statutes can be used to arrest and detain a suspected trafficker while the trafficking allegations are still being investigated. Because trafficking cases frequently are the product of reactive law enforcement activities, there often is an immediate need to detain the suspected trafficker to prevent his/her flight. The immigration statutes provide a means of arresting and detaining a defendant while the trafficking allegations are being investigated." 5

United States

The United States is mainly a transit and destination nation for trafficking in persons. It is estimated that fourteen thousand to over seventeen thousand people, primarily women and children, are trafficked to the U.S. every year. The U.S. Government is strongly committed to fighting trafficking in persons at home and abroad. The Trafficking Victims Protection Act of 2000, enhances pre-existing criminal penalties, affords new protections to trafficking victims and makes obtainable certain benefits and services to victims of severe forms of trafficking. It also sets up a Cabinet-level federal interagency task force and establishes a federal program to supply services to trafficking victims. The U.S. Government recognizes the need to maintain and further enhance efforts in order to attain the goals and objectives of the Act. 6

The U.S. Department of State began watching trafficking in persons in 1994, when the issue started to be covered in the Department's Annual Country Reports on Human Rights Practices. At first, coverage focused on trafficking of women and girls for sexual purposes. The report coverage has expanded over the years, and U.S. embassies around the world now regularly observe and report on cases of trafficking in men, women, and children for all types of forced labor, including agriculture, domestic service, construction work, and sweatshops, as well as trafficking for commercial sexual exploitation. 6

New York State's Human Trafficking Law

In 2007, New York State enacted its first law particularly targeting human trafficking and so joined the progressively growing number of states with anti-trafficking legislation. Seen by advocates as one of the most complete human trafficking laws in the nation, this historic legislation gave New York State new and important powers. It criminalized sex trafficking and labor trafficking as well as revising existing laws to make stronger criminal justice responses to traffickers. It also fashioned mechanisms for providing services and assistance for human trafficking victims, making New York one of only a handful of states to address the urgent needs of victims, and it established an interagency task force to synchronize New York State's anti-trafficking efforts. 9

Before the enactment of New York's Human Trafficking Law, in spite of having a human trafficking problem that is one of the worst in the nation, New York's laws were insufficient. With its long international border, major ports of entry, and diverse population, New York is a fertile ground for traffickers. Only California, Florida, and Texas outrank New York in the number of federal human trafficking cases… [END OF PREVIEW] . . . READ MORE

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