Work in Switzerland and the Sex Trade

Posted on 01 March 2007 by LegalBeagle

Police in Bern and Schwyz have arrested over 200 persons over the past few days in connection with human trafficking and organized prostition rings. The current operation has uncovered dozens of women of Romanian origin working in Switzerland as prostitutes in the canton of Schwyz and is the result of a close collaboration between the Romanian and Swiss authorities.

Women from eastern european countries who are attracted by the prospect of finding work in switzerland are often tricked by criminal organizations who propose bogus swiss job opportunities and convince them to move to switzerland illegally via their smuggling networks. The women are subsequently brutalized, live in Switzerland as virtual slaves in sequestration without valid working or residency papers.

In Switzerland, while pimping (and inciting to prostitution) is illegal, prostitution itself is perfectly legal and many women (and men) work independently as prostitutes, free of the criminal constraint found in most other countries.

In Schwyz, the main arrests occurred at the Bolenberg Bar in the village of Tuggen, where a dozen girls were being kept in slavery.

The investigation and subsequent arrests have been difficult as the pimps and ringleaders –mainly Turks and Romanians– were for the most part not present at the quarters where the women were sequestered.

At the Hotel Schloss in Nidau / Berne 17 prostitutes were arrested as part of the trafficking investigation.

forced prostitutes life in switzerland work in switzerland as sex slave The trafficking of women has become a planetary phenomenon and non-governmental organizations treating the problem estimate roughly 20,000 victims coming principally from Albania, Bulgaria, and Kosovo. Figures, however, are very difficult to check and the notion of constraint has many different degrees. Most of the women working in Switzerland as forced prostitutes arrived with false promises of marriage or regular work.

Swiss authorities estimate that there are several thousand victims of sexual exploitation in the country with a large proportion coming from Romania. Swiss law punishes human trafficking with up to 20 years imprisonment.

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