Response to latest news of human trafficking in Northern Ireland

Patrick Corrigan, Amnesty International's Northern Ireland progarmme director said:

"Amnesty International welcomes the police rescue of two apparent victims of human trafficking for sexual exploitation."

"There is growing evidence that this problem is much more widespread than the PSNI previously thought and we remain concerned that there remain many undiscovered victims of trafficking throughout Northern Ireland and that many victims of trafficking in Northern Ireland are not being properly identified."

"At an official level, the fight against trafficking has been very much police-led in Northern Ireland, but we know that many victims of trafficking will never disclose their true situation to a police officer because they fear shame, deportation or reprisals from their traffickers."

"It is crucial that trafficking victims are not prosecuted for crimes, such as using false travel documents, or sent for deportation back to their country of origin, where they risk being recycled back into the hands of traffickers. Instead they should be offered temporary residence permits and appropriate support so they have time to recover from their ordeal. It would be helpful if the PSNI and the Home Office provided clarification on what will now happen to these latest rescued victims of sex trafficking."

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