Govt continues to implement measures to tackle ‘trafficking in persons’

— 18 reported TIP cases for first half of 2019

— with 131 alleged victims

— Guyana maintains its Tier 1 status on US Department of State’s TIP report

DPI, Guyana, Wednesday, July 24, 2019

For the first half of 2019, there were a total of 18 reported Trafficking in Persons (TIP) cases with 131 alleged victims – all females. Minister of Public Security, Hon. Khemraj Ramjattan disclosed this while at a TIP training session on Wednesday.

The cases came from across the country; however, the hot spots are Regions 2, 3, 4, and 7. During TIP sensitisation session today, Minister Ramjattan highlighted statistics that show Indigenous women and children are the most vulnerable.

Minister of Public Security, Hon. Khemraj Ramjattan

While Guyana has managed to maintain its Tier 1 status on the US Department of State’s TIP report, the government continues its fight against this crime. Seventeen charges along with three convictions for persons involved in Trafficking in Persons (TIP), were some of the successes yielded from the TIP Plan of Action for 2017-2018.

While it is his wish to see higher conviction rates, Minister Ramjattan acknowledged that several reasons affect the conviction rate of the perpetrators. Among these, he noted, are the fact that most victims speak another language, do not wish to testify against the perpetrator(s) and witness protection is very costly since the cases are lengthy.

To counter that, Minister Ramjattan said that a request will have to be made to the courts for swift action when it comes to such cases.

“We also have to ask magistrates and trial judges to be expeditious in these cases so that we do not have them waiting and when the lawyers for the defence ask for a long adjournment – those are not granted. It should be expeditiously done, and within a couple of months, the cases could be concluded, and witnesses and victims return to their countries,” he underscored.

Anyone with information on persons involved in ‘trafficking in persons’ or is aware of person(s) being trafficked, can contact the TIP Hotline on 592-227-4083.

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