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This sections contains a database of documents on child trafficking. Users can research by title, author, editor/organization, type, topic, keywords, geographic descriptors and year of publication.
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Type of document: News
Topic: Law enforcement
Trafficking patterns
Geographic descriptors: Canada
Language: English
Date of publication: 17 November 2004
Long Abstract: Victims' groups say the rarity of the trafficking charge indicates the federal government is not doing enough to combat human trafficking. Deborah Isaacs of MOSAIC – a Vancouver group that assists immigrants and refugees – says prosecutions such as this one are few and far between. And she says much more needs to be done because life for women being trafficked into Canada is very hard. "Very isolating. They don't have much contact, they have no freedom," she says. "For those in prostitution, they may have to have an enormous number of clients a day to meet the demand." Naomi Minwalla, an immigration lawyer who deals with victims of sex-trade trafficking, agrees that no one appears to be paying attention to the problem. "There seems to be a clear lack of communication between parties who should have an interest in eliminating this problem," she says. • LINK: Status of Women Canada background on trafficking in women RCMP Supt. Bill Ard is in charge of a 35-member team in B.C. that investigates human trafficking. He admits police don't know the extent of the problem. But Ard says steps are being taken to get a handle on the situation. "The bottom line is we're still getting going with this and I don't know what the future will hold." The RCMP is responsible for investigating human trafficking cases under the 2002 Immigration and Refugee Protection Act. So far, there have been no convictions under the legislation. One of Chatha’s other relatives has been dealt with for deception offences. The other three detained in the October 2003 raid were released without charge. The people arrested in France are in custody awaiting trial. Detective Superintendent Paul Owen, of the National Crime Squad, said: “Today marks another significant step in the on-going battle to disrupt and dismantle organised crime networks involved in this lucrative and harmful activity. “We aim to make the UK the most hostile environment for them to try and operate in. It is the culmination of months of hard work and close co-operation between a number of agencies. “There has been a great deal of support given to the operation by the Ocriest (central office for the repression of illegal immigration and the employment of illegal immigrants) in France, the West Mercia and West Midlands Police forces, the Immigration Service and the National Criminal Intelligence Service.” Mr Owen said the immigrants paid thousands of pounds to the sophisticated network and were put up in safe houses in France before being transported to the UK. Chatha arranged for the immigrants to work in one of his shops to pay off their transport fee. They also had to work to pay off the Indian passports he gave them in their name that had forged “leave to stay” stamps on them. His sister-in-law was described as having a “support role” and looked after the immigrants when they arrived in the Shropshire area and did his accounts. Some of the illegal immigrants were housed above the fish and chip shops and at his home. Singh was a customer who paid for an immigrant. He was stopped by officers on his way back to Leicester. All the immigrants who were detained have been dealt with the Immigration Service. The operation follows information from another gang who were smuggling people into the UK for Chatha’s gang. They were jailed in May this year for a total of 20 years.
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