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20 human trafficking victims, including three children, identified in Latvia last year

RIGA – Last year 20 human trafficking victims, including three children, were identified in Latvia, said Interior Ministry’ national coordinator on human trafficking, Lasma Stabina.

The number of victims has declined by one – last year 19 human trafficking victims, including six children, were identified in Latvia.

Stabina said that such social groups as jobless people, job seekers, youth, women, minors, pre-retirement age persons and persons with physical or mental disabilities have the biggest risk to become human trafficking victims.

According to the Interior Ministry’s data, last year 15 women and two girls, as well as two men and one boy were identified as human trafficking victims. Eight of the people were victims of sex slavery, seven people were victims of scam marriages, five people were exploited as laborforce.

16 of the victims were identified by service providers - women's rights NGO Centrs Marta, and NGO Patverums Drosa Maja (Shelter Safe House), while other four victims were identified by the police.

Last year, 15 of the victims were exploited in foreign countries – the Netherlands, Cyprus, the UK, Germany. Belgium, Ireland, Tajikistan, and five of them were exploited in Latvia. Among all victims, 18 were Latvian nationals and two were foreigners.

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