Cablegate: Seventh Annual Trafficking in Persons (Tip) Report

Lucia A Keegan 03/02/2007 10:08:19 AM From DB/Inbox: Lucia A Keegan






DE RUEHFR #0798/01 0601601
R 011601Z MAR 07




E.O. 12958: N/A

REF: 2006 STATE 202745


A. French law specifically forbids trafficking in human
beings -- defined as "the recruitment, transport, transfer,
accommodation, or reception of a person in exchange for
remuneration or any other benefit or for the promise of
remuneration or any other benefit, in order to put him at the
disposal of a third party, whether identified or not, so as
to permit the commission against that person of offenses of
procuring, sexual assault or attack, exploitation for
begging, or the imposition of living or working conditions
inconsistent with human dignity, or to force this person to
commit any crime or misdemeanor" - for both sexual and
non-sexual purposes (French penal code, Book II, Title II,
Chapter V, Sec 1bis, Article 225-4-1 and following).

Two laws forbid subjecting a person to working and living
conditions which infringe on human dignity: Article 225-13 of
the Penal Code notes that "obtaining the performance of
unpaid services or of services against which a payment is
made which clearly bears no relation to the importance of the
work performed from a person whose vulnerability or
dependence is obvious or known to the offender is punished by
five year's imprisonment and by a fine of 150,000 euros;"
Article 225-14 notes that "subjecting a person whose
vulnerability or dependence is obvious or known to the
offender to working or living conditions incompatible with
human dignity is punished by five years' imprisonment and by
a fine of 150,000 euros." Further, subsequent articles
(225-15 and 225-15-1) provide for stiffer penalties for
persons who conduct either of the two previous activities
against more than one person (seven year's prison and 200,000
euros); against a minor (seven years' prison and 200,000
euros; or against several persons, of whom one is a minor (10
years' prison and 300,000 euros).

There is no law that specifically forbids slavery in the
French penal code, although, as a signatory to the European
Convention on Human Rights, article 4 of which forbids
slavery, France forbids slavery. A senator and a
parliamentarian from the centrist party have introduced a
bill that would criminalize slavery and servitude in France,
though neither the Senate nor the National Assembly has yet
taken up the measure.

B. and C. Penalties are the same for sexual and labor
exploitation trafficking, as the French legal definition of
trafficking covers both (see para above). Trafficking in
persons is punishable by up to seven years in prison and a
fine of up to 150,000 euros (Art. 225-4-1). The penalty
rises to 10 years' imprisonment and a 1.5-million-euro fine
if the trafficking involves a minor, pregnant woman, or other
"vulnerable persons"; a person "upon his arrival on (French)
territory;" if threats are used; or if the perpetrator holds
a position that requires him/her to fight against human
trafficking or in any of several other aggravating
circumstances (Art. 225-4-2). If an organized gang
perpetrates the trafficking, it is punishable by 20 years'
imprisonment and a 3-million-euro fine (Art. 225-4-3), and if
the trafficking is committed with "recourse to torture or
acts of barbarity," the perpetrator(s) incurs life
imprisonment and a 4.5-million-euro fine (Art. 225-4-4).

D. Sexual assault is punishable by up to five years in
prison and a 75,000-euro fine (Art. 222-27), seven years and
100,000 euros if the victim is under 15 years of age or if
there are aggravating circumstances (Arts. 222-28 and
222-29). Convicted rapists can receive up to 15 years in
prison (Art. 222-23); if the rape was committed against
someone under 15 years of age, the penalty increases to up to
20 years (Art. 222-24).

E. Prostitution itself is not illegal, but exploiting
someone to prostitute him or herself (e.g. pimping, or
"procuring" someone else) is illegal, as is solicitation.
Prostitutes can be arrested for 'passive' solicitation (as
determined by the police; the law is vague on what
constitutes 'passive conduct,' and this can include even the
manner of dress or having a large number of condoms on one's
person). The age of majority in France is 18. Anyone
soliciting, accepting, or obtaining a person of less than 18
years of age for sexual services in exchange for remuneration
or the promise of it is subject to three years' imprisonment
and a 45,000-euro fine (French penal code Article 225-12-1),
more for aggravating circumstances (Article 225-12-2), and
even more (seven years' prison and a fine of 100,000 euros)
if the child is less than 15 years of age (Art. 225-12-3).
Solicitation can bring up to two months in jail and up to
3,750 euros in fines (Art. 225-10-1). Pimps are punished
under laws prohibiting procuring," defined as when a person
"in any manner 1) helps, assists, or protects the
prostitution of others; 2) makes a profit out of the
prostitution of others, shares the proceeds of it, or
receives income from a person engaging habitually in
prostitution; and/or 3) hires, trains, or corrupts a person
with a view to prostitution or exercises on such a person
pressure to practice prostitution or to continue doing so."
(Art 225-5) Procuring is punished by seven years'
imprisonment and a fine of 150,000 euros. The law also
criminalizes acting as an intermediary between a prostitute
and a pimp; facilitating the justification of a pimp's
fictitious resources; being unable to account for one's
income when one lives with a prostitute; and obstructing
prevention, control, assistance, or re-education efforts for
prostitute(s). Under aggravating circumstances (including
where the prostitute is a minor), procuring is punishable by
ten years' imprisonment and a fine of 1.5 million euros (Art.
225-7), and if the prostitute is under 15 years old, it is
punishable by 15 years' imprisonment and a 3-million-euro
fine (Art. 225-7-1). If an organized gang does the
procuring, the punishment is 20 years' prison and a
3-million-euro fine (Art 225-8), and if the procurer(s)
resort to torture or acts of barbarity, it is punishable by
life imprisonment and a 4.5-million-euro fine (Art 225-9).

F. As of the end of February, France has not yet compiled
its official statistics for 2006; OCRETH finalizes and
presents each year,s statistics at the end of April.
However, OCRETH has provided us preliminary numbers for 2006.
Given the relative weight of the sex trade in slavery in
France, post believes it appropriate to examine pimping and
solicitation arrests in addition to trafficking data, as the
former are likely also reflective of convictions of persons
running trafficked persons (mostly women) in the sex trade.

The Ministry of Interior released preliminary figures showing
that in 2006, 746 persons were charged with pimping, of whom
55 percent were foreign and 40 percent women. In comparison,
the final OCRETH assessment of 2005 figures, 880 persons were
charged with pimping, of whom 55 percent were foreign, but
only 30 percent were women. As with the total number of
victims (see paragraph A.), the percentage of Esatern
Europeans charged with pimping fell significantly from 2005
to 2006, from about 30 percent to about 20 percent. OCRETH
said that authorities identified 1,219 victims in 2006, up
from 1,189 in 2005. Although OCRETH Acting Director Emile
Lain said the number of minors charged with pimping has
dropped into the single digits, he could not furnish an exact
number at this stage.

In September, the Justice Ministry shared its statistics on
convictions for pimping, solicitation, and trafficking for
2005. According to its figures, in 2005, there were 1,603
convictions for pimping and aggravated pimping (some of which
could have been the same person convicted on multiple
counts). Post's NGO contacts believe, and OCRETH's Emile
Lain concurs, that prosecutors continue to apply the
anti-pimping laws in place of the anti-trafficking provision
with regard to sex slaves because the anti-pimping laws are
so strong, and prosecutors are accustomed to using them.
However, more than 50 people charged in a Bulgarian Roma
baby-selling ring busted by OCRETH and local police officials
in Lille and Marseille in October, 2005 were charged on the
basis of the anti-trafficking law, resulting in convictions
for all but one defendant.

In any event, in 2005 there were 346 convictions on the basis
of the two basic anti-pimping laws; 245 aggravated pimping
convictions for those instances with a plurality of authors
or accomplices; and 507 aggravated pimping convictions for
those cases in which there was more than one victim. There
was one conviction for aggravated
pimping of a victim of less than 15 years of age.

The government provided information on the penalties imposed
ONLY for those cases in which the pimping count in question
was the sole infraction for which the individual was
committed. In many cases, persons were convicted on several
different counts, so we have only a kind of anecdotal sample
as regards penalties. (NOTE: Government officials were
trying to give the most accurate picture possible of the
sentence received for the specific pimping infraction. For
that reason, they did not/not provide the penalty if the
pimping infraction was only one among two or more convictions
that a person received. For example, if the person had been
convicted of murder in addition to pimping, the penalty would
obviously be much higher, and there would be no way to know
how much of the penalty applied to the pimping conviction.

With this caveat in mind, we learn that, for example, on code
10495, "aggravated pimping in which the vulnerability of the
victim was apparent," there were 12 convictions in 2005. In
five of those cases, the conviction was only one of the
convictions for which the person was sentenced; in four cases
it was the FIRST of a list of convictions, and in three cases
it was the ONLY conviction the person received. In these
three cases, the people convicted on this count, and ON NO
OTHER COUNT, received firm prison terms (without suspension
or possibility of parole) averaging 16 months. However, for
the nine other persons convicted of that particular
infraction in 2005, we have no information on the penalty

Of the 55 persons convicted of "aggravated pimping involving
a minor from 15 to 18 years of age," only eight were
convicted solely on this count; seven of those persons
received a firm prison term, serving an average of little
more than 25 months each.

Of the 118 persons for whom "aggravated pimping because the
case involved multiple victims" was their SOLE conviction
(out of the 507 total convictions for that infraction), 107
received prison terms, 85 of them firm. The average prison
term was three years and six months.

Of the 37 persons convicted solely of "aggravated pimping in
the case where there were multiple authors or accomplices"
(of the 245 total convictions for the infraction), 31
received prison terms, 26 of them firm; the average time
served was just under 18 months..

Of the 309 persons convicted in 2005 on the basis of the
basic anti-pimping law that prohibits aiding, assisting, or
protecting the prostitution of another, for 53 it was the
sole infraction. Of those 53, 36 received prison sentences,
17 of them firm; the average time served over 18 months.
Thirteen of the 53 received fines, the average of which was
843 euros.

In the case of the one 2005 conviction for "aggravated
pimping because the victim was less than 15 years old," we
have no information on the penalty received, because the
person was convicted on one or more other counts.

Post can provide more detail on convictions relative to other
pimping infractions; here we have provided a random sample.

As regards domestic forced servitude, the Committee Against
Modern Slavery (CCEM) helps victims bring claims against
their "employers" (one-fifth of which claim diplomatic
immunity as members of the diplomatic corps) on the basis of
Penal Code Articles 225-13 and 225-14 (see above). In 2006,
the victims won several cases. According to CCEM officials,
their judicial service is currently working on the cases of
89 victims at various stages of the judicial process, 39 of
which are new cases that they took on in 2006.

G. In 2006, according to OCRETH, French authorities
dismantled 34 international trafficking networks and several
(OCRETH could not yet provide this number) France-based
trafficking networks. There are large and small networks
operating in France, and often, the chiefs of the networks do
not enter France, but stay out in the country of origin, or
sometimes a third country. There is no indication that any
French government officials are involved in trafficking.

H. The French government actively investigates trafficking
cases, using surveillance, telephone taps, and a wide range
of investigative techniques. In addition, French law
encourages the testimony of trafficking victims by providing
residency cards for victims who file a complaint or testify
in cases that end in a conviction, but French police can also
proceed (on an investigation, or with taps, etc.) without a
victim's complaint or testimony.

I. OCRETH has organized with Fondation Scelles (see NGO
descriptions in Part II) a National Day of Cooperation that
will bring together magistrates, prosecutors, police,
academics, and NGO representatives. The conference, scheduled
for March 13, 2007, will provide training especially to
police representatives to sensitize them to the
vulnerabilities and appropriate treatment of trafficking. A
2005 effort to raise awareness among the police forces, and
to encourage attacking the &small hands8 ) the ground
level ) of trafficking networks, has continued with meetings
and training sessions. The results of this effort can be
seen in increased arrests for soliciting seen (2542
convictions in 2005 versus 1893 in 2004.) In addition,
OCRETH hosts various police officials or judicial magistrates
for rotations, in which the officials learn more about
OCRETH's work and the French government's aims. OCRETH
invites NGOs to facilitate at these training sessions.
Recently these training sessions have been extended to the
police academy and law school in Paris. Soon similar
Awareness Seminars will be offered in Prefectures around

J. The French government cooperates with other governments in
investigating and prosecuting traffickers and in trying to
prevent trafficking from occurring.

OCRETH has an officer posted in the French Embassy in Sofia,
Bulgaria, to serve as a liaison with Bulgarian officials to
combat the trafficking of Bulgarian nationals to France. The
officer is attached to the French police attach's office. A
program debuted in 2005 to bring Bulgarian police to France
for exchanges continued in 2006, with 3 Bulgarian police
serving alongside OCRETH officials. In Bucharest, Romania,
the French Embassy has a large cell that works closely with
local police to address the trafficking issue; the OCRETH in
Paris works with the Romanian police attach here; and the
French MFA recently led a mission comprised of officials and
NGOs to Romania to share best practices with their
counterparts and to set up contact networks.

In the summer of 2006, the Ministry of Tourism instituted a
program to combat sex tourism (by French citizens and
residents). As of September 2006, anti-trafficking police
officials were assigned to 12 French embassies in countries
with well-known sex tourism trades (Brazil, Cambodia, Costa
rica, India, Indonesia, Morocco, Mexico, the Philippines, The
Dominican Republic, Senegal, Sri Lanka, and Thailand) in an
attempt to prosecute offenders, and raise official awareness
and cooperation in those countries.

After years of poor cooperation, OCRETH and Nigerian law
enforcement officials have begun planning a collaboration, to
be instituted in 2007, to fight Nigerian recruitment
networks. The French will send personnel to Nigeria to
provide information gleaned from victims found in France, and
to develop a program of interdiction with Nigerian officials.
Police officers involved in the fight to combat trafficking
travel regularly to source countries to work with their
counterparts, although they have had problems finding willing
counterparts in Sierra Leone, and Cameroon.

K. France can extradite persons suspected of trafficking to
other countries, and the process can be expedited when the
seeking country is a fellow party to the European arrest
warrant. In the case of a country such as Bulgaria or
Romania, extradition is subject to the Council of Europe
extradition treaty. France does not extradite its own

L. There is no evidence of French government involvement in
or tolerance of trafficking on either a local or national
level. Governmental authorities do not facilitate or condone
trafficking, nor are they otherwise complicit in such

M. Punishments for any official person whose post requires
him/her to participate in the fight against human trafficking
who is found guilty of trafficking are more severe than the
penalties for traffickers (French penal code, Article
225-4-2), and the law provides for a seven-year imprisonment
and fine of up to 750,000 euros if someone "cannot account
for resources corresponding to one's lifestyle while being in
close contact with one or more (trafficking) victims or
perpetrators" (Art. 225-4-8).

N. France's child sex tourism laws have extraterritorial
coverage. Sex with minors can be punished under French law
if the act is committed by a French national or by a person
habitually resident on French territory (i.e., the person
need not be a French citizen to be subject to the law).
(Penal Code, Art. 225-12-3).

In May 2005, 20 leading tourism professionals signed a
charter with Tourism Minister Bertrand pledging to increase
their efforts against child sex tourism. Under the charter,
the companies agree to conduct several actions to aid in the
fight. Currently, nearly 20 companies are enlisted,
including Accor hotels, Air France, Carrefour, Thomas Cook,
Corsair, and others. Together they produce awareness raising
ads in guidebooks and magazines, on in flight videos (Air
France) and in hotel literature.

O. France has signed and ratified all the referenced
ILO Convention 182 - Ratified 9/11/01
ILO Convention 29 - Ratified 6/24/37
ILO Convention 105 - Ratified 12/18/69
Optional Protocol to CRC - Signed 2/6/00, Ratified 2/5/03
Protocol to Prevent, Suppress and Punish TIP supplementing UN
Convention against Transnational OC - Signed 12/12/00,
Ratified 10/29/02


A. A trafficking victim who files a complaint against
his/her trafficker(s) or who testifies against him/her is
eligible for a temporary three-month card providing residency
status and a work permit. If the police can corroborate the
victim's report (with reference to names, locations, etc.),
the temporary card can be renewed for another three months
for a total of six months, and then again for an additional
six months. If the trafficker against whom the victim made
the complaint or testified is convicted, the victim is
eligible for a permanent residency card (Article 76 of Law on
Internal Security, Official Journal of March 19, 2003). An
association, the Accompaniment Places of Welcome (ALC),
provides long-term shelter services for trafficking victims
in metropolitan France and Corsica. Thirty-three
associations provide 42 places in 36 shelters across France
for trafficking victims, and belong to the ALC. The
government funds three-quarters of the ALC budget, with the
City of Paris funding the last quarter. In 2006, the ALC
received notifications on 58 trafficking victims in need of
shelter from French associations. ALC placed 52 of the
victims in 25 shelters, 6 of whom eventually returned to
their country of origin. ALC-member shelters provide
judicial, administrative, health, and psychiatric assistance;
help in finding a job or getting new training; assistance to
the victim to return to his/her country of origin if that is
what he/she wants; and food and

On October 31, 2005 the Interior Ministry issued a circular
reminding police, prefecture, and departmental leaders of the
means by which they can authorize temporary residence permits
and encouraging them to consider disseminating them more
broadly. The text includes a specific reference to the
residence permits that can be authorized in conjunction with
the 2003 Law on Internal Security (LSI) for trafficking
victims. It clarifies that the temporary residence permit
that can be offered to trafficking victims is for six months
(rather than three) and encourages authorities to take into
consideration the presentations that NGOs make on the
victim's behalf when considering whether to grant a permit.
The circular further reminds that a principal condition of
the granting of the permit is the victim's total cutting of
ties with the persons exploiting her or him. The exact
language of the circular reads (informal Embassy
translation): "Beyond the hypotheses envisaged by the law
(2003 LSI), other situations of distress can justify a
humanitarian and benevolent examination. In this regard, I
ask you to give particular attention to all the victims of
modern slavery who seek a temporary residence permit, alone
or supported by an association, without having necessarily
cooperated with the police or justice system nor immediately
testified against their exploiters for fear of reprisals. In
this case, I ask you to implement your power of appreciation
to examine humanly sensitive situations, when there appear
serious indicators letting one presume the quality of the
asking victim, resulting from the realistic character of
his/her story, of his/her having been taken in charge by an
association and the proofs that he/she furnishes on behalf of
his/her will to rejoin society." (Ministry of Interior,
Circular NOR/INT/D/05/00097/C, October 31, 2005)

B. See above, the government provides the bulk of the budget
of the NGO in charge of the shelter network.

C. Social services, NGOs, or police can call the ALC to
request placement for a victim. There are short-term
emergency centers that host the victim while the long-term
shelter is preparing to receive her/him. The entry
questionnaire for ALC is deliberately limited in order to
protect victims in case they are collaborating with the
police or serving as a witness.

D. Some prostitutes have been fined under the 2003 LSI.
While the maximum fine under the law is 3,750 euros, OCRETH
estimates that the average fine is about 340 euros. The
government believes that bringing the victims in off the
street accomplishes two goals: 1) it is an opportunity for
the police or an NGO to encourage him/her to file a complaint
against his/her trafficker(s) and 2) taking the victim off
the street for a night or a day deprives the trafficker of

E. See above, authorities encourage victim participation in
trafficking investigations and prosecutions.

F. The GoF issues temporary, renewable residence permits of
three and six months to victims of trafficking who make a
formal complaint against their traffickers. The GoF does not
provide information on how many of these permits it issues,
as they are provided through mayor,s offices and not
tabulated nationally. The GoF does not/not have a witness
protection program by which it could, for example, disguise
the identity of victims for reinsertion into society.

G. The fight against child sex tourism is a mandatory
element of the training that students in French tourism
schools undertake to receive their degrees.

H. Post is not aware of any instances of repatriated French
trafficking victims.

I. There are numerous NGOs in France that work with adult
and child victims of trafficking, prostitution, child sex
tourism, and forced labor. A few of the more prominent are
(organizations centered in Paris unless noted otherwise):

Amis du Bus des Femmes - (Friends of the Women's Bus). NGO
that works with prostitutes, both trafficked and
untrafficked, to provide care and to help reinsert them in a
non-prostitute life. The NGO drives its equipped bus to
locations frequented by victims; it provides medical
attention but also seeks to be a refuge for victims in hopes
of helping them extricate themselves from slavery.

Amicale du Nid - Founded in 1946, NGO that works on the
streets to aid prostitutes and provide shelter, training, and
other assistance in Paris, Lyon, Toulouse, Marseille,
Grenoble, and Montpellier. Has a bus service, Intermede.

Association Against Child Prostitution (ACPE) ) Supports
shelters for child prostitution victims in the Philippines
and Guatemala. Provides training for French tourism students
on sexual tourism involving children. Supports legal cases
against French nationals prosecuted for engaging in sexual
acts abroad with minors.

Association of Places of Accompaniment (ALC), Nice ) Created
in 1913, ALC provides social services in the Alpes-Maritime
department of France. Its specialized Service for Prevention
and Social Readaptation (SPRS) provides assistance to people
in prostitution and victims of human trafficking. It
coordinates multiple preventative programs. SPRS provides
street work (social workers, public health workers, and
cultural mediators go on the streets from 8 pm to 3 am),
counseling, vocational guidance and follow-up, cultural and
linguistic mediation (SPRS staff speak several of the
languages of trafficked victims), awareness and information
campaigns, professional training, and runs a national network
of protection for victims of trafficking known as Ac.Se.
(Secure Welcome). SPRS Director Patrick Hauvuy works
tirelessly to help trafficking victims and to raise the level
of services available to victims both within France and
within Europe broadly as well. He is extremely active in
visiting source countries and working with NGO personnel and
authorities there.

Committee Against Modern Slavery (CCEM) - Founded in 1994,
the CCEM helps victims of domestic servitude. Since its
inception, the CCEM has helped about 300 victims; CCEM
officials estimate they take on about 30 new cases each year.
In July 2005, the French state was found guilty in a
CCEM-sponsored case at the European Court of Human Rights of
having failed to adequately protect a young Togolese woman.

ECPAT France - NGO that works to combat sex tourism involving
children, affiliated with the international ECPAT network.
ECPAT France was founded in 1992. ECPAT works within an
international network. In France it is very active with Air
France, which sells goods for which the proceeds go to Ecpat,
and shows on its buses to Paris airports a video warning of
the potential judicial consequences of engaging a minor for
sex abroad (making the point that French nationals are bound
by French law on the matter even outside French territory).

Esclavage Tolerance Zero (Marseille) - Works with CCEM in
Paris, but focuses also on sex slaves in addition to domestic

Fondation Scelles - Founded in 1993, fights against
prostitution and trafficking in persons. Has a very strong
legal research team, which publishes on pan-European legal
schema for combating trafficking. Also works with NGOs in
source countries.

Mouvement du Nid - Part, along with Amicale du Nid, of Nid
(Nest), which seeks to create a society without prostitution.
It is present in most regions of France, and in some other
countries (Brazil, Portugal, Belgium, and Cote d'Ivoire).

Terre d'Asile - Founded in 1971 to promote the daily use of
the right of asylum, follow the evolution of legal
dispositions and administrative measures relating to asylum,
help welcome refugees and asylum-seekers, and advocate a
policy of social and professional readaption.

La Voix de l'Enfant - "Voice of the Child," Founded in 1981.
Its goal is "To Listen to and Defend Childhood in Distress in
France and in the World." Works in several different fields,
including combating sex tourism involving children. Has
several affiliate organizations as well.
Please visit Paris' Classified Website at: fm


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