Brian Donald, Europol
Elena-Loredana Dobleaga, Europol
Trafficking in human beings is a serious crime and an abuse of an individual’s fundamental rights and dignity. It involves the exploitation of vulnerable people, often minors, traded by criminals as commodities for the purpose of economic gain. It has a complex and often transnational character and requires an effective response at international level.
Europol as the European Union’s law enforcement agency plays an important role in the fight against human trafficking. In this webinar Brian Donald, Chief of Staff at Europol will present key facts and trends in human trafficking in the EU and the multi-level complexities involved in responding effectively to this crime. He will also discuss the threat of child trafficking especially in light of the current migration flows into the EU.
The purpose of the webinar is to generate discussion on how to combat human trafficking and in particular identify potential trafficking victims, especially among children.
About the Lecturers:
Brian Donald, Head of the Office of the Director, Europol joined Grampian Police in Scotland in May 1978 reaching the rank of Detective Superintendent. He subsequently served as a Senior Manager in the Serious Organised Crime Agency (SOCA). The bulk of his early police career was on drugs investigation, surveillance and major crime/incident investigation. In 1999 he was seconded to the National Criminal Intelligence Service as Head of International Policy. Over the next 7 years he worked in the EU justice and home affairs arena and has represented the UK at a wide range of working groups and meetings. He transferred from the police into SOCA on 1 April 2006 where he headed the International Strategy and Partnerships Department responsible for Europe, the EU, Turkey and the Balkans. On 1 August 2007, Brian was appointed Head of the UK Liaison Bureau at Europol. On the 1 June 2010, Brian took on his current role at Europol as the Head of the Office of the Director. In this role he has a specific responsibility for promoting cross-departmental coordination and is therefore active across all areas of the business. With a particular focus on addressing issues that are either recurrent or exceptional, he has a broad experience in executive decision making, structured advice and project management.
Elena-Loredana Dobleaga is a lead analyst at Europol, member of the team fighting trafficking in human beings. Among her various responsibilities the main ones are strengthening cooperation between the member states when combating trafficking of human beings, providing support to the member states in ongoing investigations, providing support in the frame of EMPACT THB Priority Area. From Jan 2011 Mrs Dobleaga serves as operational analyst where she is responsible for providing operational analytical support in transnational cases related to trafficking of human beings. Prior to that Mrs Dobleaga was the Head of Intelligence Analysis Unit of the Anti-Corruption General Directorate within Romanian Ministry of Interior, working mainly on fighting corruption among the personnel of the Romanian Ministry of Interior. Mrs Dobleaga is a police officer with a law degree and a master in combating organized crime, both with Bucharest University, Romania.
The focus of this webinar was to shed light on the atrocious crime of human trafficking in the context of the recent migration flows which involves the exploitation of vulnerable people, often children.
Sexual exploitation is the most common form of abuse
Internet is increasingly used as a facilitator of human trafficking
Possible child trafficking indicators are: children with disabilities, unaccompanied children, maturity level of child
Eurostat reported that 5338 criminals were prosecuted in 2014 in the European Union for trafficking related crimes such as sexual exploitation, labour abuse and pretty crimes
Challenges in combating human trafficking : capacity and resources, language barriers, lack of network
Requirements to combat trafficking: international cooperation, multi-disciplinary approach at national level, commitment from all actors involved
Child Trafficking can be prevented in the following manners:
-Further training of law enforcement to help them identify potential victims
-Address the matter immediately if something is suspected
-Form a relationship with local law enforcement to clarify who to approach
-Report any suspicion of child trafficking to the authorities
This webinar brought over 90 participants together to discuss this on-going issue that the EU is currently facing. The questions of how to best combat trafficking and identifying every potential child victim still remains. Nevertheless, the webinar provided some tools to allow law enforcement, governments and other organisations to get closer to an answer to identify, prevent and eventually stop child trafficking all together.
You can find the recordings of the webinar HERE.