Understanding Human Trafficking through the Lens of Central American Law Enforcement and Victims


Jarrod Sadulski, PhD | September 20 | 11:30 AM-12:30 PM

Topic: Research, Law Enforcement | Knowledge Level: Intermediate, Advanced | Location: TBD

Human trafficking through Central America with victims heading to the United States is an emerging international crisis. Objectives of this presentation are to share the presenter’s in-country research on human trafficking in Central America which involved studying how victims are trafficked through Central America to the United States. He traveled to the Central American country of Belize in February of 2019 and spoke with those on the front lines in Central America involved in detecting human trafficking victims before they reach the United States. The presenter will share his research on human trafficking through Central America that was obtained through speaking with immigration officers, defense force members, Belize Coast Guard members, and the Human Trafficking advocate with the Belize Judicial Branch on the current issues that exist in Belize and the greater Central American region in terms of human trafficking. In addition, published data and research by the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime will also be presented. The objectives in this presentation are to share insight that he gained from Central America in terms of indicators that officers in this region are currently seeing from their interdiction of human trafficking, which include victim branding/tattooing, gang associations with human trafficking in Central America, victims in the sex trade awaiting unfulfilled promises of being smuggled north, and case studies of actual victims who have been abused by human traffickers. Objectives include providing the audience with a deeper understanding of how human trafficking appears through the eyes of victims and international law enforcement.

Presentation Objectives:

·  Provide the audience with a deeper understanding of human trafficking trends in Central America

·  Describe the human trafficking encounters law enforcement in Belize has experienced

·  Share research from speaking with Belize immigration officers, Belize Defense Force members, Belize Coast Guard members, and the Human Trafficking advocate with the Belize Judicial Branch

·  Discuss indicators of human trafficking, such as branding/tattooing

·  Discuss the gang association in Central America with human trafficking

About the Presenter