Agency, Consent and Exploitation
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Human trafficking and people smuggling are sometimes, erroneously, treated as interchangeable. The chapter outlines the apparently clear-cut distinction between human trafficking and people smuggling in international law, stressing that the distinction is less conspicuous in real-life cases. Human trafficking is a complex crime, and practitioners need specialist training to differentiate between those being trafficked who should be managed as victims and those being smuggled who are, in law, engaged in a crime. Identification rests on interpreting the way in which the ambiguous notions of consent and agency have been exercised by the trafficked/smuggled individual. Accurate identification is further hindered by the imprecision of the concept of exploitation in the UN Trafficking Protocol leading to divergent interpretations in different jurisdictions.
Keywords:People smuggling Identification Consent Agency Exploitation
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