U.S. Department of State 2004 Trafficking in Persons Report - Peru
|Publisher||United States Department of State|
|Author||Office to Monitor and Combat Trafficking in Persons|
|Publication Date||14 June 2004|
|Cite as||United States Department of State, U.S. Department of State 2004 Trafficking in Persons Report - Peru, 14 June 2004, available at: http://www.refworld.org/docid/4680d82ac.html [accessed 29 April 2016]|
Peru (Tier 2 Watch List)
Peru is a source country for women and children trafficked internally for sexual exploitation. Most Peruvian victims of internal trafficking are girls forced or coerced into prostitution in nightclubs, bars, and brothels. Some victims are girls trafficked as domestic servants. Most internal trafficking networks move girls from rural to urban areas; traffickers recruit victims through local, informal, and family-based contacts. Peruvians have also been trafficked to Western Europe, particularly Spain. Illegal migrants, some of whom may be trafficked, also transit Peru. More complete information on trafficking, pointing to a significant number of victims, has made it possible to include Peru in this report for the first time.
The Government of Peru does not fully comply with the minimum standards for the elimination of trafficking; however, it is making significant efforts to do so. Government officials have recently acknowledged the gravity of the country's trafficking problem and established a new multi-agency working group to coordinate state action. Officials need to develop a comprehensive national plan, revise and update statutes covering trafficking-related offenses, take law enforcement action against traffickers, improve intelligence, and initiate cooperation with inter-national destination countries such as Spain. Based on new commitments to act vigorously against trafficking, Peru is placed on Tier 2 Watch List.
Peru's weak prosecution efforts improved modestly in 2003. The government does not yet have an effective anti-trafficking law enforcement policy, but is developing one. Comprehensive new anti-trafficking legislation has been drafted and is slated for expedited consideration by the legislature. In January 2004, the Ministry of Interior created an anti-trafficking unit, which conducted raids on brothels and rescued victims. Prosecutors have initiated one trafficking prosecution, which is still pending. Nationwide in 2003, 83 persons were arrested for pimping; none of these arrests has led to a prosecution. The Ministry of Interior has pledged to keep statistics on trafficking cases. Government corruption and complicity in the cross-border movement of persons remains a major problem.
Peru lacks a national strategy to provide protection for victims of trafficking. But some government protection measures are available under existing social services for crime victims in Peru. The Ministry of Women and Children runs 38 centers nationwide that provide temporary housing for female crime victims. The Ministry of Foreign Affairs has no policy to assist victims abroad, a serious shortcoming that should be promptly addressed.
Peru does not have a national prevention strategy and officials have much to do, but some existing government programs, such as teaching children about commercial sexual exploitation in schools, have helped to warn potential victims. The Ministry for Women and Children runs a hotline for domestic violence (over 6,000 calls in 2003). Ministry officials are aware of trafficking and have led government efforts to eliminate the worst forms of child labor, including commercial sexual exploitation. These and other social assistance programs are modest steps in the right direction; the multi-agency working group is now called upon to develop and implement an aggressive and comprehensive plan.