Monday, May 7, 2007

Ecuador: Two Men Prosecuted for Trafficking

Ecuador - Two young Ecuadorian men have received stiff jail sentences for human trafficking in the capital, Quito, with the case representing only the second successful prosecution of traffickers in the country.

The judge handed down a 12-year sentence to a 19 year-old male and a six-year term for his 18-year-old accomplice.

The judicial authorities have confirmed that they are currently trying to get convictions on 160 cases of human trafficking.

Working with the Public Prosecutor's Office, the Child Welfare Police and the International Labour Organization (ILO), IOM provided protection and assistance to the victims and their families through its Global Emergency Fund. The assistance included transportation, lodging, medical, legal and psychological support for the victims and their relatives during the trial in Quito.

The victims, both girls, were 13 and 15 years old when they left their homes in a small town in Pichincha Province with their boyfriends who put them to work in the sex industry.

They said they were in love and left home hoping to marry and have children. During their ordeal, the girls were sexually, physically and verbally abused. They were given food and shelter, but this was deducted from their earnings.

The victims testified against the accused but are still struggling to accept that they were abused and exploited by the men they loved and trusted...

READ THE FULL ARTICLE AT International Organization for Migration

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