United States Says Prosecution Of Trafficking in Persons Offences Lacking In Antigua and Barbuda

The content originally appeared on: Antigua News Room

The Government of Antigua and Barbuda does not fully meet the minimum standards for the elimination of trafficking but is making significant efforts to do so.

The government demonstrated overall increasing efforts compared with the previous reporting period; therefore Antigua and Barbuda remained on Tier 2.

These efforts included investigating more trafficking cases, cooperating with a foreign government on one investigation, issuing a residency permit to one potential victim, finalizing and implementing a new NAP, and increasing public awareness efforts.

However, the government did not meet the minimum standards in several key areas.

The government did not initiate any prosecutions or identify any confirmed victims for the fourth consecutive year and has never convicted a trafficker.

A lack of sufficient training on the difference between human trafficking and migrant smuggling contributed to gaps in victim identification.

Vigorously investigate and prosecute trafficking crimes, convict traffickers, and seek appropriate penalties, which should involve significant prison terms.

Continue to increase efforts to identify victims through proactive screening of at-risk populations, such as newly arrived migrants, individuals in commercial sex, People’s Republic of China (PRC) national and Cuban workers on foreign government-affiliated programs, and LGBTQI+ individuals.

Continue to reduce delays in court proceedings.

Consistently implement government-wide SOPs to proactively identify victims and refer them to care, and train front-line officials in trafficking indicators and the difference between human trafficking and migrant smuggling.

Continue to provide trauma-informed training on trafficking for NGOs and government service providers to improve their ability to care for potential trafficking victims.

Train police, prosecutors, and judicial officials on evidence collection and management for use in judicial proceedings.

Provide anti-trafficking training for diplomats.

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