Human trafficking is the recruitment, transportation, transfer, harboring or receipt of persons for the purpose of exploitation.
It is done by means of threat or use of force or other forms of coercion; abduction; fraud; deception; the abuse of power or of a position of vulnerability; or the giving or receiving of payments or benefits to obtain the consent of a person having control over another person. Exploitation includes, at a minimum, sexual exploitation, forced labor or services, slavery or practices similar to slavery, servitude or the removal of organs.
Due to the “hidden” nature of trafficking activities, gathering statistics on the magnitude of the problem is complex and difficult. Given these complexities, the following statistics are the most accurate available, but may represent an underestimation of trafficking on a global and national scale.
• An estimated 800,000 men, women, and children are trafficked across international borders each year. The majority of transnational victims are trafficked into commercial sexual exploitation. These numbers do not, however, include the millions of victims around the world who are trafficked within their own national borders.
•Of the roughly 800,000 people trafficked across international borders each year, 80% are female and 50% are children.
•Human trafficking is the third most profitable criminal activity, following only drug and arms trafficking. An estimated $9.5 billion is generated in annual revenue from all trafficking activities, with at least $4 billion attributed to the worldwide brothel industry.