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Every day thousands of women, men and children are trafficked worldwide for various exploitative purposes. The crime affects every one of the 57 OSCE participating States, despite many well-intentioned efforts to eradicate it. Given that the central motivating factor for trafficking in human beings (THB) is financial gain and that it is particularly profitable for criminal actors, enhancing States’ capacities in the area of financial investigations has received increasing focus in recent years. Several initiatives to develop innovative partnerships create lists of indicators, and train relevant practitioners have launched. However, these efforts largely remain fragmented, under-utilized or restricted to individual jurisdictions; in short, the promise of robust financial investigations as a tool to combat THB remains unrealized.
Since its establishment in 2003, the Office of the OSCE Special Representative and Co-ordinator for Combating Trafficking in Human Beings (OSR/CTHB) has worked to support action amongst OSCE participating States (pS) and provide policy guidance on how to prevent and tackle THB.
In light of the challenges outlined above, with this publication the OSR/CTHB seeks to advance financial investigations in two ways:
First, we catalogue more than 20 disparate publications in a single resource and synthesize hundreds of indicators culled from the different documents into a single comprehensive list of indicators broken down into categories. The compendium of resources can, with a single document, give practitioners guidance on what has been published on this topic and where to go for more guidance. It also ensures that all of various indicators published in dozens of documents around the world can be found in one place.
Second, the publication offers a step-by-step guide to building coordinated financial investigations in an effort to move anti-THB efforts from policy to practical effect on the ground. Thus, whether countries are looking to simply enhance an existing system or build a new one, they have a guide to building financial investigations.
OSCE/Office of the Special Representative and Co-ordinator for Combating Trafficking in Human Beings, Following the Money: Compendium of Resources and Synthesized Step-by-Step Guide to Financial Investigations related to Trafficking in Human Beings (Vienna 2019)
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