Policing the Border Within: Sex Trafficking and the Regulation of Sex Work



The rhetoric and the policy in relation to human trafficking has largely been located within the broader domain of counter-organised crime measures and the primary criminal justice focus has been directed at crimes that involve the breaching of borders and migration law. In practice this is increasingly realised through increased scrutiny of the sex industry and has involved attempts at recriminalising sex work by stealth. It has done so at the expense of more complex and inter-industry analysis of trafficking practices—not just sex trafficking (cf. Hathaway, 2008). Weber (2006) has posited that borders are mobile and increasingly personally mobile—that is, borders are being attached to individuals rather than to specific places or sites. Thus, the border that requires policing morphs into a person that requires policing. This chapter suggests that the focus on policing sex trafficking is primarily concerned with the breach of the border, and is increasingly policed within countries and on the bodies of women who legitimately work in the sex industry.


Criminal Justice Human Trafficking Transnational Organize Crime Victim Support Transnational Organise Crime 
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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Criminal Justice & CriminologyMonash UniversityCaulfield EastAustralia

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