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Human Trafficking and Exploitation (Criminal Justice and Support for Victims) Act (Northern Ireland) 2015

Section 2: Human Trafficking

Section 2 creates a new consolidated offence of human trafficking which is intended to replace the previous separate offences of human trafficking for the purposes of sexual exploitation and human trafficking for other forms of exploitation provided for under sections 57 to 59 of the Sexual Offences Act 2003 and Section 4 of the Asylum and Immigration (Treatment of Claimants, etc) Act 2004 respectively, which are subsequently repealed by the Act.  This section makes it an offence to arrange or facilitate the travel of another person with a view to them being exploited.  The offence covers all kinds of exploitation, as defined under section 3 (Meaning of exploitation for purpose of section 2).

Subsection (2) clarifies that arranging or facilitating travel may include transporting, transferring, harbouring or receiving the victim, or transferring or exchanging control over them.

Subsection (3) makes it clear that an offence has been committed whether the person intends to exploit the victim themselves or whether they know or ought to know that another person is likely to exploit them.  Subsection (4) defines travel to mean entering into, departing from or travelling within any country.  Subsection (5) ensures that a victim’s consent to any act forming part of the offence is irrelevant.

Subsections (6), (7) and (8) taken together address the international dimension of human trafficking.  In line with the existing offences of human trafficking, subsection (9) ensures that an offence under this section is triable on indictment only.

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Text created by the Northern Ireland Assembly department responsible for the subject matter of the Act to explain what the Act sets out to achieve and to make the Act accessible to readers who are not legally qualified. Explanatory Notes accompany all Acts of the Northern Ireland Assembly.


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