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Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Irishmen are rapists says state-funded ad

The fake hunt for the imaginary tortured people continues, even in recession.

For years, I've been asking one simple question of Ruhama, the ever-growing state-funded religious quango dedicated to rooting out human sexual trafficking and to supporting those smuggled into Ireland and forced to work as prostitutes.

Where are the trafficked women you claim to help?

Frankly speaking, they don't appear to exist. Despite Ruhama's latest wheeze - a TV advert which depicts Irishmen as laughing casual rapists enjoying a pint after sexually assaulting a beauteous Slavic blonde - the evidence still doesn't stack up.

We'll wait and see what arises from the arrest of an Irishman and his partner in Wales last weekend. It is alleged that he may have been involved in a string of brothels across Ireland, some of which may have had trafficked women working on their premises.

But in the unlikely event that it does emerge that women were trafficked in this case, it would be virtually the first in Ireland. I quote below a parliamentary question from Denis Naughten to the Minister for Justice this week, in which it swiftly emerges that almost no one has been prosecuted for the offence of trafficking people into Ireland for sexual exploitation.

Six people. That's how many people have been done for human trafficking in Ireland in this century. Six people.

So, now that Ruhama have gone all multimedia, at least we know what they spend their significant state funding on. What we don't know is why they are funded to the extent they are, and why they are given money from the exchequer to slander Ireland as a rape nation and Irishmen as casual rapists.

Ruhama says it exists to support the victims of human trafficking for sexual exploitation. How many have they helped?

The reality of this sad, dark world is different to that which the sisterhood and their state-funded hysteria campaign Ruhama would have you believe.

Repeated studies, as well as police evidence from Ireland, UK, America and European countries, indicates that nearly all non-national women who travel to affluent countries like this one to work in prostitution (or indeed as lapdancers, strippers or erotic dancers) do so because they choose to.

Now, some feminists, especially those who make common cause with orders of Catholic nuns, don't like the idea that other women would volunteer to work in the sex trade, and might even travel abroad to do so. And indeed, no little girl ever grew up saying she wanted to be a hooker when she was older.

But the money is good, countries like Ireland are much safer than Eastern Europe or Africa, and the quality of living is higher. The sad reality is that many women do choose this profession, they travel to Ireland and elsewhere to work at it for a period of time, then they leave to go home or to ply their trade in another country.

Ireland is not a nation of laughing rapists, no matter what the sisterhood might say. How about they start justifying the expense they cost the taxpayer by telling us how many people they help annually and how they were helped.

Because if their only role is to create hysteria about a wrong that does not exist so that they can malign Irishmen as casual habitual rapists, then Ruhama has to be top of the list of quangos we need to cull.

Parliamentary Question for Written Answer:

284. Deputy Denis Naughten Information Zoom asked the Minister for Justice, Equality and Law Reform Information Zoom the number of prosecutions and convictions for human trafficking and sexual exploitation in 2007 and to date in 2008; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [45075/08]

Minister for Justice, Equality and Law Reform (Deputy Dermot Ahern): Information Zoom It is assumed the Deputy’s question refers to prosecutions and convictions for human trafficking in the broadest sense, i.e. for both labour and sexual exploitation.

Section 4 of the Criminal Law (Human Trafficking) Act 2008, which came into operation on 7 June, 2008, creates a new offence of trafficking of children for labour exploitation and trafficking of adults for sexual and labour exploitation. No prosecutions have been commenced or convictions recorded for this offence to date.

Section 3 of the Child Trafficking and Pornography Act 1998 (as amended by Section 3 of the Criminal Law (Human Trafficking) Act 2008) created the offence of trafficking of children for the purpose of sexual exploitation. To date one person has been charged by the Garda Síochána on four counts of attempting to incite another to commit an offence contrary to Section 3 of this Act. The accused was charged in January 2007 and has already pleaded guilty to one count. The case is listed for sentence hearing at Dublin Circuit Criminal Court on 24th February, 2009.

Prior to the enactment of Criminal Law (Human Trafficking) Act 2008, An Garda Síochána utilised the provisions of the Illegal Immigrants (Trafficking) Act 2000, which remains in force. Since September 2000 over one hundred people have been arrested and detained in respect of alleged breaches of Section 2 of this Act. Five persons have been convicted in respect of twenty-five individual breaches of Section 2 Illegal Immigrants (Trafficking) Act 2000, which relates to the facilitation/organisation of the illegal entry of persons into this State for gain.


TFH said...

Maybe the reason for the lack of convictions is that it's the trafficked women (or in the below case, children) who are being treated like criminals?

Or did the 'sisterhood' invent this girl?


JC Skinner said...

I'm sure you can see that there's a lot of detail lacking in that report, partly due to procedural reasons (the child is minor) but primarily because there is no detail available.
One would assume a garda investigation followed to establish the identities of any alleged traffickers. Yet no arrests have followed.
We can speculate as to why. One possible reason is that she wasn't trafficked and just said she was to Gardai in order to establish an asylum claim. You might prefer other speculations. But that's all any of them are.
I don't accept your characterisation of standard immigration investigations as attribution of any criminality.
You can't have a border policy whereby anyone who claims to be trafficked gets to stay. Yet, without any supporting evidence, some such claims have been permitted.
It should be easy enough for a state-funded religious organisation to explain who they spend their money on.
And in the current economic climate, it is prudent to ask.

TFH said...

There were no convictions because the child did a runner less than a week later - unsurprisingly, given that she had been sent to Mountjoy prison and then to the ever-inept HSE (and we know how well children involved in complex legal issues are treated by them).

Of course "[y]ou can't have a border policy whereby anyone who claims to be trafficked gets to stay". That's not the point of her case at all.

The point is that while the Gardai are more concerned with prosecuting teenagers who are suspected to be victims, it's not surprising that the men who traffic them go unconvicted. That's the reason for the low figure of trafficking prosecutions - they are more interested in putting 17 year olds in Mountjoy. How can you expect her to stick around and construct a case when she is treated like she was? As the judge said, there was no reason to think she was lying - she was trafficked into the country. And the first step is to arrest her??

More info is here, btw:

JC Skinner said...

The HSE are the body responsible for looking after minors with no guardians who are made wards of the state. Who would you want looking after them? Should they be thrown on the streets? I can imagine your outcry then.
I think you'd need to substantiate your outrageous assertion that the Gardai are 'more interested in throwing kids in Mountjoy' than in pursuing prosecutions for trafficking.
Frankly, the evidence all points to the contrary. The Gardai have been all over every lapdancing club in the country repeatedly, have been systematically raiding brothels (such as the transnational case last weekend) and seeking to identify traffickers with a zeal rarely outside of prosecuting speeding drivers.
Despite all of these investigations, which have regularly produced scores of women who entered the country illegally, almost none transpired to have been trafficked, as the prosecution rates show.
Again, I continue to ask, why can't Ruhama present information on how many trafficked women they have assisted, what countries they came from and what form that assistance has taken?
I suspect the answer is because they don't want the public to realise that this problem, to the extent that it exists at all in Ireland, is utterly overstated by them in order to justify a gargantuan budget provided by the Irish taxpayer.

TFH said...

JC, again you miss the point. The jab at the HSE isn't to say that somebody else should be taking care of them, it's to point out that a) the HSE needs a bit of reform in dealing with these girls (and Ruhama or an organisation like it could surely play a role in that?) and b) as an explanation for the fact she did a runner, which could otherwise be written off as the actions of a criminal.

The jab at the guards was not to say that they hate trafficking victims (come on). They have to work with the law as it stands. And as it stands, a girl trafficked into the country and forced into prostitution must be treated like a criminal. How is this just? How are the interests of the country and taxpayer served by putting her in jail?

It's getting a bit tiring constantly repeating my chief point. Do you want to engage with it at all? In case you've forgotten: one of the main reasons why the conviction rates for trafficking are low is because when Gardai discover a victim of trafficking, that victim is automatically treated like a criminal. Putting 17 year olds in Mountjoy does not make them likely to cooperate with a prosecution.

JC Skinner said...

I think it's you who's missing the point. It firstly has to be established that there is a cohort of women being trafficked into Ireland and secondly it has to be revealed how many of them Ruhama are 'helping', and in what way they claim to be helping them, in order to justify the state funding they are receiving.
If you read the Criminal Law (Human Trafficking) Act from this year, you would know that you're propagating a falsehood by stating that trafficked people are treated as criminals.
That's simply not true.