Last Updated: Friday, 15 December 2017, 16:28 GMT

U.S. Department of State 2002 Trafficking in Persons Report - Costa Rica

Publisher United States Department of State
Author Office to Monitor and Combat Trafficking in Persons
Publication Date 5 June 2002
Cite as United States Department of State, U.S. Department of State 2002 Trafficking in Persons Report - Costa Rica, 5 June 2002, available at: [accessed 17 December 2017]
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.

Costa Rica (Tier 2)

Costa Rica is a destination and transit point for women and children trafficked for the purpose of sexual exploitation. Most trafficking victims originate in Bulgaria, Colombia, the Dominican Republic, Nicaragua, Russia, Panama and the Philippines. There have also been other Asian and African victims. Illegal migration – including both trafficking in persons and migrant smuggling – goes through Costa Rica en route to the United States and Canada.

The government does not yet fully meet the minimum standards; however, it is making significant efforts to do so, despite resource constraints. Costa Rica does not have a law against all forms of trafficking in persons; however, some traffickers have been prosecuted under related laws such as document fraud. A wiretap law enacted in December 2001 will facilitate investigations of trafficking, child sexual exploitation, and other crimes. Regarding protection for trafficked victims, a victims' office provides legal assistance to crime victims, including victims of trafficking, but has had limited impact due to resource constraints. The government gives limited indirect assistance to child crime victims. These well-intentioned but under-funded initiatives do not address the welfare needs of foreign victims of trafficking who are generally deported. An inter-ministerial committee on migration resolves policy differences and coordinates some anti-trafficking initiatives. The government has sponsored information campaigns on illegal migration and commercial sexual exploitation. Other programs that may help to prevent trafficking are aimed at women's political participation, women's economic autonomy, and school attendance for children. The government works closely with international organizations, civic groups and foreign governments on anti-trafficking initiatives.

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