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International News Coverage of Human Trafficking Arrests and Prosecutions: A Content Analytic Study
Unformatted Document Text:  1999; Jeffreys, 1997; Shannon, 1999). If sexual exploitation were a male versus female phenomenon, the current study would reflect this dichotomy; however, the results do not aptly characterize the sexual exploitation of trafficked individuals as a male-dominated and male- only perpetrated crime. While it is likely that a portion of the 29% (n=47) of cases involving individuals with multi-dimensional trafficking roles (both males and females) were involved in sexual exploitation, even if all were perpetrating sexual exploitation, 44%(n=71) of the cases analyzed by this study still would be non-exploitative. This is further illustrated by the finding that 55% (n=74) of cases evaluated by this study involved non-exploited individuals who were willingly trafficked without force, fraud or coercion. The literature asserts that human trafficking for the purpose of sexual exploitation is a significant problem. Debates in the literature regarding the force/ choice dichotomy of prostitution (Busza, 2004; Derks, 2000; Gulcur & Ilkkaracan, 2002; Jeffreys, 1997, 1999; Kelly, 2003; Murray, 1998, Wijers, 1998) and the domination of patriarchal structures as the primary reason for sexual exploitation and human trafficking (Murray, 1998; Shannon, 1999) create a situation where all acts of human migration within the sex trade are deemed exploitative acts of human trafficking. The results of this study suggest otherwise. Some explanations for this discrepancy are as follows: • Human trafficking for the purpose of sexual exploitation is overrepresented in the literature and does not accurately portray the reality of the phenomenon; 62

Authors: Denton, Erin.
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1999; Jeffreys, 1997; Shannon, 1999).  
If sexual exploitation were a male versus female phenomenon, the current 
study would reflect this dichotomy; however, the results do not aptly characterize 
the sexual exploitation of trafficked individuals as a male-dominated and male-
only perpetrated crime.   While it is likely that a portion of the 29% (n=47) of 
cases involving individuals with multi-dimensional trafficking roles (both males 
and females) were involved in sexual exploitation, even if all were perpetrating 
sexual exploitation, 44%(n=71) of the cases analyzed by this study still would be 
non-exploitative.  This is further illustrated by the finding that 55% (n=74) of 
cases evaluated by this study involved non-exploited individuals who were 
willingly trafficked without force, fraud or coercion.
The literature asserts that human trafficking for the purpose of sexual 
exploitation is a significant problem. Debates in the literature regarding the force/
choice dichotomy of prostitution (Busza, 2004; Derks, 2000; Gulcur & Ilkkaracan, 
2002; Jeffreys, 1997, 1999; Kelly, 2003; Murray, 1998, Wijers, 1998) and the 
domination of patriarchal structures as the primary reason for sexual exploitation 
and human trafficking (Murray, 1998; Shannon, 1999) create a situation where all 
acts of human migration within the sex trade are deemed exploitative acts of 
human trafficking.  The results of this study suggest otherwise. Some 
explanations for this discrepancy are as follows:
Human trafficking for the purpose of sexual exploitation is 
overrepresented in the literature and does not accurately portray the 
reality of the phenomenon;
62


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