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Criminal Law (Human Trafficking) Act 2008

This Act creates offences criminalising trafficking in persons for the purposes of sexual or labour exploitation, or for the removal of their organs, and criminalises the selling or purchasing of human beings. The Act criminalises the trafficking of children into, through or out of the State, and amends the Child Trafficking and Pornography Act 1998 to bring the offence of trafficking into line with other new trafficking offences. The Act also criminalises trafficking in adults. The maximum penalty is life imprisonment. Extra-territorial jurisdictions are established. Anonymity is guaranteed for those who testify in court against alleged traffickers.

Courts are given power to exclude people from the Court for the purpose of ensuring a lack of publicity. The scope of the Criminal Evidence Act 1992 is extended to offences created by the new Act, allowing for victims of trafficking to give evidence via television link. The Act does not, however, contain detailed provisions to support and protect victims of trafficking, and has been criticised in this regard. (Amnesty, 11 October 2007)

The regulatory impact analysis states that the then Bill was solely concerned with the criminal law response to trafficking, and that the protection of victims of trafficking will be dealt with administratively. The Act seeks to implement two EU Framework Decisions: the Framework Decision on Combating Trafficking in Human Beings (for the purpose of labour and sexual exploitation) and the Framework Decision on Combating the Sexual Exploitation of Children and Child Pornography.

Date: 07 May 2008
Legislation Type:Act (IE)
References: Child Trafficking and Pornography Act 1998; Criminal Evidence Act 1992
Geographical Focus:Ireland
In Force:Yes
Opt In:Not applicable
Keywords:Adult; Child; Migration (Exploitative); Migration (Forced); Minor; Sex; Trafficking in Human Beings;

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Key legislation

International Protection Act 2015

Single procedure - international protection

Criminal Law (Human Trafficking) (Amendment) Act 2013

trafficking of human beings

international protection

Irish Nationality and Citizenship Acts 1956-2004

citizenship - naturalisation

Immigration Act 2004

immigration - entry into Ireland (legal and illegal) - visa - residence - detention - carrier liability

Immigration Act 2003

immigration - carrier liability - border controls - deportation - detention

Immigration Act 1999

immigration - deportation - detention - exclusion

Refugee Act 1996

refugee status - non-refoulement - asylum - family reunification - Dublin Convention

Employment Permits (Amendment) Act 2014

employment permits - migrant worker - habitual residence condition

Employment Permits Act 2006

employment permits - employment of legally resident third country national - labour migration

Employment Permits Act 2003

free movement - EU citizens - EU accession 2004 - labour migration - employment permits

European Convention on Human Rights Act 2003

human rights - freedom of movement (right to) - non-refoulement - explusion

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