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Human Trafficking

Volume 455: debated on Wednesday 10 January 2007

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many EU nationals were (a) convicted in England and Wales for (i) trafficking and (ii) facilitating illegal entry and (b) deported without charge following investigations into such activity in each of the last three years. (112672)

[holding answer 19 December 2006]: To date we have seen 30 convictions for trafficking for sexual exploitation under the Sexual Offences Act 2003 in England and Wales. Four of these convictions have involved EU nationals.

At the present time, IND-UKIS Border Control has no centrally collated data on the numbers of EU nationals convicted for facilitating illegal entry. This information could be obtained only at disproportionate cost.

EEA nationals cannot be deported without charge as EEA nationals and their dependants are exempt from administrative removal under section 10 of the 1999 Immigration Act.

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, pursuant to the answer of 11 December 2006 to the hon. Member for Ochil and South Perthshire, Official Report, columns 833-4W, on people trafficking, when he expects a decision to be made on whether the Government will sign the European Convention on action against trafficking in human beings; and if he will make a statement. (113115)

[holding answer 8 January 2007]: The UK fully supports the multiple aims of the Convention and participated actively in the negotiations.

The Home Secretary is at present giving the matter his fullest consideration and will be writing to colleagues in Government in the near future. There are no time limits within which signature must take place.

The UK Government are firmly committed to tackling trafficking in human beings, domestically and internationally. Plans were published in November for a new joint venture between SOCA and the Immigration Service to tackle organised immigration crime and we have recently established a new UK Human Trafficking Centre to coordinate action in this area.