Specialist Human Trafficking Lawyers
Olliers has vast experience of defending people trafficking offences. The firm’s reputation for committed and rigorous defence work means that we attract some of the heaviest and serious criminal cases in the country.
What is Human Trafficking?
The Palermo Protocol to Prevent, Suppress and Punish Trafficking in Persons, especially Women and Children provides an internationally recognised definition of human trafficking:
“Trafficking in persons shall mean the recruitment, transportation, transfer, harbouring or receipt of persons, by means of the threat or use of force or other forms of coercion, of abduction, of fraud, of deception, of abuse of power or of a position of vulnerability or of the giving or receiving of payments or benefits to achieve the consent of a person having control over another person, for the purpose of exploitation. Exploitation shall include, at a minimum, the exploitation of the prostitution of others or other forms of sexual exploitation, forced labour or services, slavery or practices similar to slavery, servitude or removal of organs.”
What is the Difference between Smuggling and People Trafficking
Human smuggling is characterised by illegal entry and international movement but is a voluntary act and does not involve the exploitation of the smuggled person. There is not likely to be any coercion or violence from those assisting in the smuggling.
Smuggling facilitates entry into the UK but the immigrants concerned are usually complicit in the offence whereas with trafficking, the person who is trafficked has little choice as to what happens to them.
One of the most serious offences of trafficking is trafficking into the UK for sexual exploitation under the Sexual Offences Act 2003 and such offences carry a maximum sentence of imprisonment of 14 years. What’s more, the offence is known as a ‘lifestyle offence’ under the Proceeds of Crime Act 2002 and will therefore attract confiscation proceedings upon conviction.
Olliers provide specialist advice and representation throughout England and Wales.
We are the Manchester Legal Awards Crime Team of the Year 2016 and are ranked as a Top Tier criminal firm in both the 2016 edition of the Legal 500 and Chambers Directory 2017.