Last Updated: Tuesday, 23 September 2014, 09:44 GMT

U.S. Department of State 2005 Trafficking in Persons Report - France

Publisher United States Department of State
Author Office to Monitor and Combat Trafficking in Persons
Publication Date 3 June 2005
Cite as United States Department of State, U.S. Department of State 2005 Trafficking in Persons Report - France, 3 June 2005, available at: http://www.refworld.org/docid/4680d84219.html [accessed 23 September 2014]
DisclaimerThis is not a UNHCR publication. UNHCR is not responsible for, nor does it necessarily endorse, its content. Any views expressed are solely those of the author or publisher and do not necessarily reflect those of UNHCR, the United Nations or its Member States.

France (Tier 1)

France is a destination country for women trafficked for the purposes of sexual exploitation and involuntary domestic servitude, primarily from Eastern and Central Europe and Africa. The number of Chinese women trafficked to France for sexual exploitation increased in 2004. The government estimates that there are 10,000 to 12,000 trafficking victims in France, 3,000-8,000 of whom are children forced into prostitution and labor. Nigerian trafficking networks continued to expand their activities in France. Trafficking of Brazilian women and girls for sexual exploitation to French Guiana – a French possession – remained a serious problem.

The Government of France fully complies with the minimum standards for the elimination of trafficking. Although the government did not provide full data on investigations, prosecutions, convictions, and sentences, the Secretary of State has determined that it has made a good faith effort to do so. The government took important steps to prevent child sex tourism and continued to fund support services for victims. The government must ensure that implementation of the 2003 Domestic Security Law does not result in re-victimizing, punishing, and deporting trafficking victims by improving the screening of foreign prostitutes so that trafficking victims are properly identified and protected from their traffickers.

Prosecution

In 2004 the government continued implementation of the 2003 Domestic Security Law that called for arresting, jailing, and fining trafficking victims as a means of discouraging the operation of trafficking networks and to gain information to pursue cases against traffickers. However, in practice, the law has yet to prove itself an effective addition to French anti-trafficking efforts. It harms trafficking victims and allows for the deportation of foreign victims, regardless of possible threats they face in the country to which they return. Some NGOs voiced concern that the 24-hour period that victims are detained was inadequate to encourage them to assist in investigations and prosecutions. In 2004, the government arrested 3,290 suspected prostitutes and reported that the majority were released; some were administered fines. According to the Justice Ministry, authorities arrested 940 individuals for pimping in 2004, a 33 percent increase over the number in 2003. In 2004, the Government of France continued its bilateral police cooperation on trafficking and took a leadership role in a commission that brings together 13 European countries in an effort to encourage regional cooperation among police, NGOs, and international organizations. There was no indication of trafficking-related complicity among French Government officials.

Protection

The government and city of Paris continued to fund comprehensive services for trafficking victims through the Accompaniment Places of Welcome (ALC), a private association that provided long-term shelter services for victims in metropolitan France and Corsica. An ALC network of 33 shelters across France agreed to provide space for trafficking victims. In 2004, the long-term shelter reported assisting 44 victims across France. All shelters provide judicial, administrative, health, and psychiatric assistance; help in finding a job or training; repatriation assistance; and food and lodging. The government continued to offer victims three to nine months' temporary residency based on police assessment of needs and victim cooperation. If cooperation led to a conviction, the victim became eligible for permanent residency status. French authorities estimated that 200 trafficking victims were granted temporary residency in 2004.

Prevention

In 2004, the government continued its efforts to prevent French citizens from engaging in child sex tourism abroad. In September 2004, an inter-ministerial commission, which included NGOs and tourism firms, produced a report containing recommendations on the prevention of child sex tourism. The government continued to fund the NGO-run anti-child-sex-tourism campaign on all Air France flights, warning French tourists against engaging in sex with minors and alerting them that engaging in child sex tourism is a violation of French law. The fight against sexual tourism involving children was a mandatory training component for students enrolled in French tourism schools. During the reporting period, the government developed and produced a public awareness campaign aimed at reducing domestic demand. One component of the campaign included a poster emphasizing that those who engage prostitutes may also be exploiting trafficked victims.

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