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Fiji Sun


Workshop teaches humane laws

March 05
12:00 2011


The crux of trafficking law is not prostitution or breaches of the immigration law, it is the exploitation of human beings by other human beings.
Former High Court judge Nazhat Shameem made the comment at the prosecution workshop on human trafficking last week.
Ms Shameem said the objectives of the workshop were to ensure all prosecutors were familiar with the new provisions of the Crimes Decree on human trafficking.
He said the workshop ensure to introduce them to the international conventions and Protocols relevant to trafficking and people smuggling.
She said they discussed the jurisprudence which had developed in countries around the world on human trafficking and slavery laws and to see how Fiji’s jurisprudence could be developed.
Ms Shameem said prosecutors were also given case studies that were relevant to human trafficking.
“The case studies were important because they were drafted to cover the trafficking of women and children for sexual exploitation, trafficking for the exploitation of labour, adoption agencies which are in reality involved in the trafficking of children, slavery, deceptive recruiting and debt bondage,” Ms Shameem said.
“They covered the sort of situation where an employer might recruit someone to work in a garment factory and pay for their airfares, then when he or she arrives in Fiji, to confiscate his or her passport and refuse to pay the employee until the “debt” is paid fully.”
She said prosecutors were expected to establish a debt bondage situation by leading evidence of an economically exploitative relationship, or of an employee who can speak no English, has no one to turn to in Fiji, and cannot go to the authorities because he or she has no immigration status here.
Ms Shameem said the workshop had good feedback from the participants.
“I believe they learnt their way around the trafficking laws,” she said.

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