Captivating For Captives

AWARENESS IS USELESS WITHOUT ACTION

Tactics

Add as Friend‘Stranger Danger’ is the scary term we drill into our kids to stop them talking to strangers. This didn’t stop my little brother though. Not only was he talking to these strangers he had only met 30 minutes prior (who were about 4 or 5 years old I should add), but he also invited them to his birthday party, and rattled off his address without hesitation. When reminded that he was not supposed to tell strangers where he lived, he responded, “But they’re not strangers, they’re my friends”. If only all our stranger-friends had the innocence of a 4 year old.

‘Human trafficking’ is probably the adult-equivalent of the ‘Stranger danger’ term. Unfortunately however, too many people don’t take it seriously enough (or simply haven’t heard of it), and unintentionally make themselves available to predators.

Many years ago, during a trip to the shopping centre, one of my siblings looked fearfully at a man with a rather large belly, a hairy face and just an overall gruff sort of appearance. Having been taught about stranger danger, they were aware that there were ‘bad’ people out there. “Is that the bad man?” they asked earnestly, hopefully not loud enough for the poor guy to hear (at least they were wise enough to understand that not all ‘bed men’ walk around in dark coats and hang out in shadows, handing out candy). Who knows? Unfortunately for us, they come in all shapes and sizes. The ‘bad man’ was more likely the respectable looking chap with an expensive suit, his hair slicked back and a charming glint in his eye. Sometimes the ‘bad man’ is a woman.

So how do the ‘bad’ men/women obtain their victims?

  • They prey on the vulnerable (usually people who are: uneducated, living in poverty, lacking family/social support, migrants (legal or illegal), women and children)
  • They offer fake ‘dream-come-true’ jobs to people in the above situations, sometimes in another country, and the offer is readily accepted
  • They ‘buy’ them from others, usually family members or friends
  • Sometimes they simply kidnap them
  • Once in ‘possession’ of the person, they often:
    – strip them of their passport and any identifying documents
    – beat, rape, torture, threaten, starve, and lie to the victim
    – ensure the victim doesn’t know where they are, doesn’t know the language, and is scared of authorities (through lies)
    – hide them away from authorities and community members
    – move them around from place to place to avoid being caught
    – use fear and all forms of abuse to control them

Every story is different, here is one of them. Watch Natalia’s story.

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This entry was posted on December 18, 2013 by in Background Information and tagged , , .
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