Due to the highly clandestine nature of the crime of human trafficking, the great majority of human trafficking cases go unreported and culprits remain at large. There are reports that many human traffickers are associated with international criminal organizations and are, therefore, highly mobile and difficult to prosecute. Sometimes members of the local law enforcement agencies are involved in the lucrative business of illegal exportation or importation of human beings. Prosecution is further complicated by victims of trafficking being afraid to testify against traffickers out of fear for their and their family members' lives.
In order to combat the globalization of this criminal behavior, international policies and practices that encourage civil participation and cooperation with trafficking victims in the prosecution of traffickers have to be developed. Human trafficking laws must provide serious penalties against traffickers, including provisions for the confiscation of property and compensation for victims. At the same time, training is needed to ensure that an insensitive investigation and prosecution process does not further traumatize trafficking victims.
Technical cooperation among countries and international law enforcement agencies is essential for investigating the extent and forms of trafficking and documenting activities of international criminal organizations. Special training is needed to develop the skills of local law enforcement agencies in the area of investigation and prosecution.
Source, transit, and destination countries should provide support mechanisms for trafficking victims involved in judicial activities. These would include extended witness protection services and opportunities to institute criminal and civil proceedings against traffickers. Destination countries should have a system of social support for victims and consider residency permission on humanitarian grounds for trafficking victims who cannot return home and/or cooperate with prosecutors.
It is also important that the police, prosecutors, and courts ensure that their efforts to punish traffickers are implemented within a system that is quick and respects and safeguards the rights of the victims to privacy, dignity, and safety.
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