South Africa 4.10.2016 08:02 am

Refugees increase human trafficking in SA

Stop Trafficking of People director Corinne Sandenbergh addressing media on human trafficking in Limpopo with general Nonhlhla Zulu in Seshego on Monday. Picture: Chester Makana/ANA

Stop Trafficking of People director Corinne Sandenbergh addressing media on human trafficking in Limpopo with general Nonhlhla Zulu in Seshego on Monday. Picture: Chester Makana/ANA

Police said the victims were from Malawi, Ethiopia, Zimbabwe, and other countries in the Middle East lured to the country with promises.

The Stop Trafficking of People has on Monday said that the increase of refugees into South Africa has increased human trafficking cases in Limpopo.

The organisation called on authorities to be wiser and urged law enforcement agencies to step up their tactics in spotting human trafficking victims.

Since January, at least 251 human trafficking victims have been rescued in Limpopo in the hands of trafficking syndicates.

Police said the victims were from Malawi, Ethiopia, Zimbabwe, and other countries in Middle East lured to the country with charming promise.

“While the traffickers threatened them with death, so we have to find out the signs and know how to identify them,” said Stop Trafficking of People director Corinne Sandenbergh.

She said most of the victims discovered that the promise was a deceit when they are forced into prostitution.

“Human trafficking is a complicated and complex crime; it’s not a body lying dead or mutilated woman, it is a lady walking through the border and saying she is a refugee,” she told a joint media briefing in Seshego.

She said since anti-human trafficking legislation was enhanced last year, the human trafficking culprits have been exposed.

The organisation also appealed to government to safeguard human trafficking victims after the trial.

Sandernbergh said the organisation suggested that human trafficking victims should not be repatriated back to their country of their origin too soon.

“We need to keep the victims in a place of safety, so that a proper case can be established and have the traffickers imprisoned.”

Police admitted that Limpopo was a human trafficking hot spot. Deputy provincial commissioner General Nonhlahla Zulu said a task team has been established to deal with human trafficking cases in the province.

“Apparently there is a syndicate that we are following information on.”

 

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