Some Brazilian Women Routinely Deported from Europe Are Sex Slaves

Part of the Brazilian women who were deported from or not admitted to Europe are victims of international human trafficking for sexual exploitation purposes.

This is the conclusion of a research dealing with women who return to Brazil via Guarulhos airport in São Paulo (the main entrance for foreign flights )after being deported or not allowed entrance in European countries.

The study was conducted in March and April 2005. 175 women answered questionnaires and 15 were interviewed. 76% of them were not admitted to their destination countries. 25% of the women interviewed admitted that they offered sexual services in Europe. Portugal led the countries with most refusals of Brazilian women, followed by Italy, France, Spain, and England.

The research also investigated the deported women. The majority is of humble origin, from the states of Goiás, Paraná and Minas Gerais (Central West, South, and Southeast regions respectively), with monthly income of up to three minimum wages (US$ 420.00). Ages varied between 25 and 40.

In 2004, according to the Federal Police, approximately 22.5 thousand Brazilian citizens were deported or not admitted to foreign countries. Of this total, 15,000 reentered Brazil through the Guarulhos Airport, and 33% were women.

The research was ordered by the National Secretariat of Justice and by the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crimes (UNODC). Several federal organisms that operate on that airport contributed to the study, such as the Federal Police, the Federal Highway Police, the Federal Revenue and Customs Secretariat, the Brazilian Airport Infrastructure Company (Infraero), and the National Sanitary Surveillance Agency (Anvisa).

The non-governmental organizations Brazilian Association of Women Defense (Associação Brasileira de Defesa da Mulher – ASBRAD), and Marginalized Women Service (Serviço da Mulher Marginalizada) also participated in the study.

Anti Slavery Campaign

Since 2004 the Brazilian Ministry of Justice and the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) have been conducting a Campaign to Combat International Human Trafficking.

The campaign’s slogans are "First they take away your passport, then your freedom" and "If someone offers you lodging, food, and clean clothes abroad, don’t believe it."

Both refer to the countless instances of women who leave Brazil under the pretext of enjoying a better life abroad and end up becoming victims of sexual exploitation.

The campaign consists in the distribution of inserts in passports and packages of condoms provided by the Ministry of Health and the placement of posters in airports,

Federal Police buildings, and busy spots in general. All the material gives the telephone number to report cases of human trafficking. The campaign also broadcasts its messages on the radio.

According to the UNODC, human trafficking is one of the most profitable activities exercised by organized crime and is responsible for around US$ 9 billion in business annually. It is estimated that each victim represents approximately US$ 30 in profits for the recruiters.

Agência Brasil

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