Serbia and Montenegro: Cover up suspected as sex trafficking case collapses

The Prosecutor's Office in Podgorica, the capital of Montenegro, halted criminal proceedings against the Montenegrin deputy state prosecutor and three other men for involvement in sex-slavery.

Montenegrin politicians, judges, police and civil servants allegedly tortured and raped the main witness, a 28-year-old mother of two from Moldova, together with other Eastern European Women's rights's rightss rights's rights's rights's rights who like her had been trafficked and held as sex-slaves. She suffered horrendous sexual abuse for over three years resulting in severe injuries including seven broken bones, internal injuries so that she cannot sit down without pain, scars from handcuffs, cigarette burns on her genitals, and bruises in her mouth.

Amnesty International said:

'The collapse of this case despite apparent detailed evidence can only cast doubt on the Montenegrin authorities' commitment to fight this inhuman trade. The halt in criminal proceedings has led to allegations of a cover-up by the Montenegrin authorities.

'The story of the main witness is consistent with many other horrifying tales of Women's rights's rightss rights's rights's rights's rights and girls forced into sexual slavery. She had come to Serbia from Moldova looking for work. After handing over her passport she became a slave, sold on to different 'owners' as if she was an animal, routinely beaten, drugged, burned and raped.'

Whenever she tried to escape she alleges that she was handed back to her 'owners' by the police until she finally managed to escape to the Women's rights's rightss rights's rights's rights's rights's Safe House in Podgorica in November 2002.

Amnesty International said: 'We are deeply concerned at allegations of official complicity in the abuse of Women's rights's rightss rights's rights's rights's rights and girls forced into slavery, and we call on the Montenegrin authorities to seriously and urgently address this issue.'

Background

There has been a marked growth of the trafficking of Women's rights's rightss rights's rights's rights's rights and girls for forced sexual services throughout the world. Montenegro and the Balkans generally are known to be transit countries as well as destinations used by traffickers of Women's rights's rightss rights's rights's rights's rights and girls.

Most of the victims come from Eastern Europe - in the Balkans it is estimated that some 60 per cent of trafficked Women's rights's rightss rights's rights's rights's rights and girls come from Moldova, one of Europe's poorest countries. Many victims are lured by promises of work in Western Europe as waitresses or similar but are forced into sexual slavery and many are broken mentally and physically by rape and extreme brutality. The victims are frequently repeatedly sold and moved to different locations.

The issue of sex trafficking is also highlighted in our current campaign for justice for all in Russia. More information...

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