Monday, November 01, 2004

Brazil-Germany Human Trafficking Bust

BRASILIA, Brazil - Police have broken up a German-based sex trafficking ring which offered European tourists sex with teenagers in Brazil's poor northeast and shipped women to Europe for prostitution.

Police found pornographic photos of girls as young as four provided by mothers who worked for the ring. Police are trying to establish whether children were offered for prostitution.

U.N. special envoy to Brazil, Leandro Despouy, said on Monday that Brazil's justice system often failed to investigate allegations of sexual abuse of children and teenagers in the country's north and northeast, where sex tourism is rife.

As many as 500,000 Brazilian children could be victims of child prostitution in the nation of 180 million, according to the United Nations. Brazil this month launched a campaign to warn women of the dangers of being trafficked abroad for sexual exploitation in a trade the U.N. estimates to be worth $9 billion a year.

Source: Reuters.