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Rome Reports

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Judges and prosecutors share best practices at global Vatican trafficking summit

For two days, judges and prosecutors from all around the world have met in the Vatican to discuss the dangers of organized crime and combat the modern slavery of the 21st century, human trafficking

It was organized by the Pontifical Academy of Sciences, and shows participants that they are not alone when fighting this issue. 

JOAN CHARLES
Judge in Trinidad and Tobago
“Just having the platform to really articulate the issues and to hear what other countries have been doing who have been addressing this problem seriously for a very long time is helpful, so I will be able to take it back. We are doing right now continued training and sensitization of the public and of the important state holders how to recognize victims of human trafficking.”

Statistics show that around 24.9 million victims are trapped in this form of slavery. Of these, 81 percent are exploited for labor and 19 percent are sexually exploited. One out of every four victims is a minor, with 71 percent being women and 29 percent male. 

ANNA BLACKBURNE-RIGSBY
Chief Judge of the District of Columbia Court of Appeals
“It is growing. It is an extremely financially lucrative criminal enterprise. So it is spreading, both labor trafficking of workers in nail salons, in restaurants and in rural areas in the agricultural business. Then sex trafficking, particularly of minors, teenagers, under age children, runaways, who are vulnerable.”

SOLOMY BOSSA
Judge in Uganda
“In Uganda, the situation in human trafficking and organized crime is dire. We have human trafficking, drug trafficking, trafficking in unknown parts and terrorism. They are all offenses which require coordinated action from our neighbors because they take a very heavy death toll sometimes or human suffering on our people. So I'm happy to be here to hear what other countries are doing, to learn best practices and to go back and inform my country that we need to move in this other direction.”

This is the goal of each of the participants, to learn from each other and collaborate on education techniques and law enforcement regulations to combat this crime, help the victims and prosecute those involved once and for all.