1. Definition of human trafficking
Human trafficking appears mainly in three types, namely sexual exploitation, forced labor, and extraction of organs or tissues. According to Article 2-1 of the Human Trafficking Prevention Act, which was promulgated on January 23, 2009 and has started implementation since June 1, 2009, “human trafficking” means?
(1) To recruit, trade, take into bondage, transport, deliver, receive, harbor, hide, broker, or accommodate a local or foreign person, by force, threat, intimidation, confinement, monitoring, drugs, hypnosis, fraud, purposeful concealment of important information, illegal debt bondage, withholding important documents, making use of the victim's inability, ignorance or helplessness, or by other means against his/her will, for the intention of subjecting him/her to sexual transactions, labor to which pay is not commensurate with the work duty, organ harvesting; or to use the above-mentioned means to impose sexual transactions, labor to which pay is not commensurate with the work duty, or organ harvesting on the victims
(2) To recruit, trade, take into bondage, transport, deliver, receive, harbor, hide, broker, to sex transactions, labor to which pay is not commensurate with the work duty, or organ harvesting, or to subject people under 18 years of age to sexual transactions, labor to which pay is not commensurate with the work duty, or organ harvesting.
2. Global prevention of human trafficking
Human trafficking violates human rights seriously and has aroused international attention since the end of World War II. For example, the United Nations passed the Convention against Human Trafficking and Women as Sex Slavery in 1949, the Convention to Eliminate All Forms of Discrimination against Women in 1979, and the Convention on the Rights of the Child in 1989. Nevertheless, the human trafficking issue has been getting worse and worse in recent years under the wave of "globalization". Transnational prostitution, forced labor and organ harvesting have become the most serious crime in the international community.
According to the human trafficking report published by the U.S. State Department in 2008, the illegal transaction of sexual exploitation and forced labor amounted to 32 billion U.S. dollars a year, involving countless victims. In Asia, human trafficking problems have been documented since ancient times: “Those human traffickers make a living by nothing but abduction.”
To further combat transnational human trafficking, the United Nations passed in 2000 a protocol to prevent and punish human trafficking especially of women and children. This Protocol has been so well received in the world that most countries have developed their own versions of human-trafficking prevention laws based on its contents. For example, the United States passed the Trafficking Victims Protection Act in 2000 and Japan set up "Human Trafficking Prevention Action Plan" and modified its related criminal laws in 2004. Moreover, the International Criminal Police Organization formed a task force in 2000 to strengthen investigation of human trafficking cases, especially for the sexual exploitation of women and children. The task force also published a best-practice manual for investigators and judicial police investigators in many countries consider the manual a good reference book.
3. Promotion of human trafficking prevention in Taiwan
Located at the hub of Asia, Taiwan is the source, the transit station, and the destination of human trafficking, making the investigation of human trafficking cases more complex than expected. Illegal immigration is different from human trafficking. An illegal immigrant, who pays the smuggling fee, is no longer controlled by the syndicate after arriving at the destination. On the other hand, a victim of human trafficking is usually controlled or physically violated after arriving at the destination. As an illegal immigrant may be a victim of human trafficking at the same time, the judicial investigative unit must tell one from the other by carefully examining the means and attitudes of the human traffickers.
"False marriage but real prostitution" is usually a human trafficking case. Some foreign spouses may fall victim to the false marriage later but not all the cases will turn out so bad and ugly. Investigators should exercise their best judgment on each case.
According to Article 2 of the Human Trafficking Prevention Act, anyone under 18 years old engaged in sexual transactions voluntarily or involuntarily is regarded as a victim. Investigators should protect the privacy of such a victim and pay attention to the feelings of the victim, especially when interacting with the media, so as to avoid adding insult to injury.