A Romanian couple have been jailed for trafficking a 14-year-old girl and other women into prostitution in the UK, in the first prosecution for child sex trafficking under the 2015 Modern Slavery Act.
First and only prosecution so far. It’s not a common crime then. We’re really not talking about those 100,000 Vietnamese birds in the nail bars.
In the case of the pair’s youngest victim, they “deliberately and callously stole her childhood,” she said.
The pair had operated in the UK since 2013 and lured the 14-year-old, one of nine siblings from a poor family, in 2016 after promising her a job as a waitress.
But on the night she arrived in the UK, she was told to change into “sexy” clothes and put on heavy makeup, because “she had the face of a child”, said Haughey.
Yes, vile, hang ’em. But do note our second thing. There doesn’t seem to be much of a market for child prostitutes if she’s got to look older, does there?
Others knew they would be working as prostitutes and were told they would share takings. But when they had arrived in the UK thye found themselves in debt bondage – told by the couple they owed money for their travel costs, as well as their “patch” of the street and rent in the flats they used in Paddington, west London. While the women could earn at least £250-300 a night, they were often given as little as £20-30 a day.
And that’s not trafficking, is it? It’s exploitation, most certainly, but it’s not trafficking.
As I an others have been saying all along we’ve no doubt at all that real trafficking does occur. Also that it’s vile, stamp on it. But a great deal, the vast majoirty in fact, of what is called trafficking just ain’t.