On 1 January 2009, the Anti-Human Trafficking Unit initiated a pilot data collection strategy. The purpose of the exercise was to gain a more informed view of the nature and extent of trafficking in human beings in Ireland. Data was collected in relation to the victims being encountered by governmental and non-governmental organisations, including in relation to those not engaging with law enforcement. The strategy functions by collecting depersonalised information in a standardised format from a variety of different sources (Government and Non-Government) and then collating and analysing this data centrally in the Anti-Human Trafficking Unit. The data collection system has been closely modelled on similar systems currently being developed and piloted in other EU Member States with some minor modifications in order to ensure that the data collection model is suited to the Irish context. The Data strategy enables the State to obtain a broad picture of the situation in relation to human trafficking in Ireland.
Three summary reports of Trafficking in Human Beings in Ireland have been produced. These reports provide an overview of trafficking in human beings as it occurred in Ireland in 2009, 2010 and 2011. Information was collected from a number of different sources which included the Human Trafficking Investigation and Co-ordination Unit of An Garda Síochána, the Irish Naturalisation and Immigration Service (INIS) of the Department of Justice and Equality and several Non-Governmental organisations such as Ruhama, ICI, MRCI and Stop Sex Trafficking, Cork. The reports also provide important information regarding the suspected victims, their backgrounds and their experiences.
Key findings of the 2011 report:
Persons reported to An Garda Síochána
In 2011, 53 investigations into human trafficking involving 57 alleged victims were initiated by An Garda Síochána. The largest identifiable groups were adult female victims of sexual exploitation from Western Africa (17), principally Nigeria, who were asylum seekers and female victims of sexual exploitation from within the EU (8). An additional 6 Irish minors were among the alleged victims of sexual exploitation. Trends observed in 2011 are inline with those observed in 2009 and 2010, though there was a reduction in the overall number of victims reported in 2011.
Persons encountered by or referred to NGOs
Twenty seven (27) alleged victims of trafficking were encountered by or referred to NGOs in 2011. The characteristics of persons encountered by NGOs were broadly the same as those reported to An Garda Síochána though relatively few minors and no males were encountered by NGOs. This is somewhat similar to trends observed in previous year in terms of persons reported by NGOs.
Criminal justice response
Of the 53 investigations initiated in 2011, 32 were ongoing at the end of 2011. The remaining cases were at various stages of conclusion including 6 investigations in which no or insufficient evidence of trafficking was found, 3 investigations resulted in files being sent to the DPP and 4 cases before the Courts. Charges were brought in 7 cases in regard to offences relating to trafficking of human beings (by comparison to 2 in 2009 and 5 in 2010). Four convictions were secured in regard to offences relating to trafficking of human beings (by comparison to 1 in 2009 and 5 in 2010). In 3 of the cases the convictions related to child trafficking while 1 case related to the sexual exploitation of adults. The details are as follows:
- The accused pleaded guilty to controlling and sexual exploiting a minor for the purposes of prostitution and was sentenced to 4 years imprisonment with the final two years suspended.
- The accused was convicted and fined €100.00 for controlling and sexual exploiting 2 minors for the purposes of creating child pornography.
- The accused was convicted and sentenced to 3 years imprisonment for sexual exploiting a minor.
- The accused was sentenced to 2½ years imprisonment with the final fifteen months suspended for trafficking undocumented persons into the State and then sexually exploited them by way of prostitution. The final fifteen months were suspended on condition that he leaves the State on his release and does not return for ten years.
The Annual Reports are available here :
2009 Annual Report - PDF (Size - 258KB)
2010 Annual Report - PDF (Size - 373KB)
2011 Annual Report - PDF (Size - 309KB) ^ Back to top