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83 victims of human trafficking identified in 2011

Beta | 16. 12. 2011

BELGRADE – Chief of the Police Department for Cross-border Crime and Criminal Intelligence Affairs Mitar Djuraskovic has said today that from the beginning of the year 83 cases of human trafficking has been identified in Serbia and 90 percent of victims are citizens of Serbia.

Djuraskovic told journalists at the roundtable about the results and initiatives for fighting human trafficking that, for various reasons, domestic citizens has appeared as trafficking victims in the majority of cases since 2004.

– That means that victims are recruited and exploited in Serbia, but there are a few cases where girls have been taken abroad, like labor exploitation of construction workers – said Djuraskovic.

He also said that the most vulnerable victims are young people and children whom traffickers sexually exploit, force to beg, steal or commit other crimes.

President of the Association of Public Prosecutors of Serbia Goran Ilic said that this Association, together with Judges’ Association of Serbia, will soon propose to competent authorities establishment of a compensation fund for victims of human trafficking and of other violent crimes.

– Victim is not only a source of information about the perpetrator, but a human being who has been injured  and has a right to compensation – said Ilic and added that compensation for victims should be provided from the property taken from convicted organized criminals.

He said that establishing a fund does not mean that criminals will be excused from damages they owe to victims, but that compensation would be more efficient and it would also help victims not to fall victim to trafficking all over again.

At was stressed at the roundtable that minimum punishment for the basic form of human trafficking should be increased from 3 to 5 years of prison and generally, senteces should be stricter – in some countries in the region, they reach imprisonment of 15 and more years.

Participants at the roundtable have concluded that a lot has been done in Serbia on fighting human trafficking, but stricter penal policy is necessary, because it does not protect just one person, but it protects basic human values, rights and freedoms.

Roundtable “Human Trafficking – Results, Initiatives and Future Steps” has been organized by Judges’ Association of Serbia and the Associations of Public Prosecutors of Serbia.

This event marked the end of a five-year project “Initiative for Fighting Trafficking in Women and Girls in Southeast Europe” which was carried out in cooperation with OSCE Mission to Serbia and Austrian Development Agency.


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