20 January 2022
Securing Evidence: The Key to Convictions in Human Trafficking

Human trafficking is a global and widespread crime, but despite its prevalence research shows persistent low levels of prosecutions and convictions of traffickers. Data from the latest Global Report on Trafficking in Persons, produced by the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC), showed that in 2018 almost 50,000 human trafficking victims were detected in 135 countries, while 88 countries reported just over 3,500 convictions...... read more

18 December 2021 
International Migrants Day 2021

As the world marks International Migrants Day, the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) urges countries to uphold human rights while combatting the criminal networks who smuggle migrants for profit. Further calls are for better access to pathways for regular migration, an adherence to obligations that are enshrined in international treaties and increased cooperation between countries to apprehend and prosecute the ringleaders behind the migrant smuggling enterprise.... read more

16 December 2021 
Nigeria Takes Steps to Stop Migrant Smuggling

The smuggling of migrants is a big business in Nigeria with criminal networks charging large sums of money to move people in and out of the West African country or facilitate their transit.
In recognition of the  magnitude of this crime, its impact on the security of the country and the safety of the migrants involved, Nigerian authorities are now working closely with the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime through the STARSOM project .... read more

10 December 2021 
Countries Unite to Tackle Smuggling of Migrants in South Eastern Europe

Crimes that cross borders can only be stopped through cross border cooperation. This was the main message of the Regional Expert Group Meeting on countering migrant smuggling in Skopje, North Macedonia.The event, which was organised by the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) and the Ministry of Europe and Foreign Affairs of France, brought together over 40 representatives from 12 countries in the South Eastern Europe region..... read more

8 December 2021
Migrant Smuggling on the United Nations Intergovernmental Agenda

The Commission on Crime Prevention and Criminal Justice (CCPCJ), the United Nations' main policymaking body on crime prevention and criminal justice, held its annual thematic discussion on 8 December 2021. This year's event focused on measures to prevent and counter migrant smuggling, while protecting the rights of smuggled people, particularly women and children, both accompanied and unaccompanied.... more

6 December 2021
COVID-19 and Crime: How Migrant Smugglers Prosper

As businesses and industries worldwide continue to struggle with the economic downturn caused by the COVID pandemic, the illicit trade of migrant smuggling has continued to flourish. Today, the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) launches a new publication in English, French and Spanish on the impact of COVID-19 on the smuggling of migrants. more

1 December 2021
Working Groups 2021: Providing a Platform for Exchange

The 2021 Working Groups on Trafficking in Persons and the Smuggling of Migrants brought together over 800 delegates from more than 100 countries to discuss a variety of current issues relating to these global crimes. more

2 November 2021
UNODC and Canada Launch New Project to Counter Migrant Smuggling

A two-year project to combat organized crime groups that smuggle migrants over multiple continents to North America is underway in thirteen countries.
The STARSOM initiative will support States along the main smuggling routes to work together to respond to migrant smuggling while protecting the lives and upholding the rights of the smuggled migrants. more

21 October 2021
UNODC Calls for an Increase in Regular Migration Options to Curb Smuggling

"If you have to leave your country very urgently to save your life, there is often no other way than to use a smuggler," says a 30-year-old man who had to pay 15,000 USD to get to Europe.
"We used all sorts of transport - plane, car, boat, train, taxi - and had to walk a long time overland. Most of the time I was suffering from the cold temperatures and lack of food and water. We were sleeping outside and were beaten up regularly," he adds. more

14 October 2021
Good Use and Abuse: The Role of Technology in Human Trafficking
Human traffickers who trick people with fake job offers and promises and then exploit them for profit are taking advantage of online technologies for every step of their criminal activities.

Research conducted by the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) shows how victims are being targeted and recruited via social media and online dating platforms where personal information and details of people's locations are readily available. more

04 October 2021
Harbouring Explained: New Publication Analyses Act of Trafficking

Victims of human trafficking are accommodated or forced to stay in locations prior to and during their exploitation or between periods of abuse.
These settings can be in brothels, private homes, factories, farms, or fishing vessels. They are often dangerous, inhumane and unsanitary, and can be controlled by criminals involved in the trafficking network. .... more

16 September 2021
Poverty and Unemployment: Main Drivers of Human Trafficking in Brazil

A new UNODC report on human trafficking trends in Brazil highlights how socio-economic vulnerability and the lack of decent employment opportunities are leading people into the hands of criminal networks who exploit them for profit.... more

21 July 2021
Iraqi Anti-Crime Officials Strengthen Cooperation with UNODC and Austrian Police

Senior Iraqi police officers have arrived in Austria to meet with experts from the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) to exchange expertise and discuss ways to cooperate closer to tackle the crimes of human trafficking and migrant smuggling... more

8 July 2021
COVID-19 and Crime: The Impact of the Pandemic on Human Trafficking

A new study released today by the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) illustrates the devastating impact of COVID-19 on victims and survivors of human trafficking and highlights the increased targeting and exploitation of children... more

28 June 2021
UNODC Highlights Lack of Justice for Migrants Abused on Smuggling Routes

Migrants who use smuggling networks to flee their home countries are often subjected to extreme violence, torture, rape and kidnapping while in transit or captivity. Despite the severity of these offences, little action is taken by national authorities and, in some cases, officials are complicit in these crimes... more

11 June 2021
UNODC Supports Jordan and Lebanon to Respond to Trafficking of Refugees

Refugees who are fleeing conflict and crisis are being targeted by human traffickers who take advantage of their vulnerable circumstances and search for a better life. Traffickers thrive in situations of instability and refugees, among them unaccompanied children, are at risk when they cross borders, travel inside a host country or even live inside a camp... more

7 June 2021
UNODC Announces Winners of Canada's "DataJam Against Exploitation"

A web application that can support police investigations into human trafficking rings has taken the top prize at the recent "DataJam Against Exploitation" competition.The team behind the winning entry, 'Buyer Resist', consists of five young professionals from British Columbia, Canada who were among 75 participants of 16 different nationalities to take part in the online technological innovation event... more

29 April 2021
UNODC Unites Countries to Combat Labour Exploitation in South Eastern Europe
Children from countries in South Eastern Europe are being forced to beg and steal on the streets of Western European cities. Men and women from the region are being exploited domestically and internationally in agriculture, the textile, construction and entertainment industries. Others, including minors, are forced to work as prostitutes or in the illegal drug trade... more
15 April 2021
Protection of Smuggled Migrants High on the Agenda at UN Forum

Migrant smuggling is a global and profitable crime with a high demand and a low risk of detection and punishment for the criminals involved. Smugglers conduct their activities with little or no regard for the safety and dignity of the people they illegally transport over national borders... more


13 April 2021
2020 - A Year in Review

The Human Trafficking and Migrant Smuggling Section of the United Nations Office and Drugs and Crime (UNODC) has released its 2020 Annual Report, which highlights the main achievements of the Section during a year of challenges and anniversaries... more

6 April 2021
UNODC and Canada to Host Anti-Human Trafficking Technology Competition
Human traffickers have integrated technology into their business model at every stage of the process, from the seeking, recruitment and the exploitation of their victims to the transfer and laundering of the illicit profits of this crime... more
31 March 2021
UNODC and Malawi launch new measures to combat human trafficking among refugees
Criminal networks are operating within the Dzaleka Refugee Camp in central Malawi where men, women and children are being exploited for profit or tricked and trafficked to other countries in Southern Africa for forced labour and prostitution... more
04 March 2021
Kenya and Uganda work closer to counter organized crime in East Africa
Crimes that cross borders need a transnational response, and international cooperation is key to preventing these crimes, securing convictions and providing support to the people affected. To foster such collaboration, the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) within the framework of the Better Migration Management (BMM) programme, brought together officials from Kenya and Uganda to enhance bilateral, legal cooperation in cases of human trafficking and migrant smuggling that involve both countries... more
01 March 2021
Afghanistan renews commitment to address human trafficking and migrant smuggling
The Government of Afghanistan has adopted a new National Action Plan, which paves the way for continued and enhanced efforts to tackle human trafficking and migrant smuggling for the next three years. UNODC, through its Global Action against Trafficking in Persons and the Smuggling of Migrants initiative (GLO.ACT), supported the development of the Plan, aligning it with international standards and norms... more
17 February 2021
New UNODC Toolkit Puts Human Rights & Gender Equality at the Forefront
Measures to prevent and address human trafficking and migrant smuggling and support the people affected by these crimes must respect human rights and promote gender equality. 
This was the clear message from all participants at the launch of a new Toolkit that provides guidance to criminal justice experts on how to adopt a human-rights and gender-equal response to these crimes... more
28 January 2021
An Interview with UNODC Goodwill Ambassador Nadia Murad
The UNODC Goodwill Ambassador for the Dignity of Survivors of Human Trafficking and Nobel Peace Prize co-winner, Nadia Murad, talks to us about her plans for the year ahead. In 2014, ISIS attacked Nadia's homeland in Sinjar to ethnically cleanse Iraq of all Yazidis. The then 21-year-old was kidnapped by Islamic State fighters along with thousands of other Yazidi women and girls. Now, as President of Nadia's Initiative she advocates globally for survivors of sexual violence and for the rebuilding of communities in crisis... more
14 December 2020
UNODC Supports INTERPOL to Target Migrant Smuggling and Human Trafficking

An INTERPOL-led operation against migrant smuggling has led to more than 200 arrests among criminal networks that were involved in the smuggling of around 3500 migrants throughout the Americas, Africa, Europe and Asia.

Up to 100 potential victims of human trafficking were also rescued during the operation, known as "Turquesa II", which brought together authorities in 32 countries across four continents, with Brazil serving as the coordination hub... more


15 December 2020
Leading UN Forum Renews Commitment to Countering Human Trafficking
The vital role of inter-agency partnership to tackle trafficking in persons was reinforced today, during a meeting of over 20 international organizations which agreed on a plan of action to combat this global crime.

Principals of the Inter-Agency Coordination Group Against Trafficking in Persons (ICAT) the UN's leading policy forum to address human trafficking which is coordinated by the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC), met for the second time since the platform was established in 2007... more


21 December 2020
UNODC releases new tools for UN Trafficking in Persons Protocol implementation

UNODC released today its new Model Legislative Provisions and Legislative Guide against Trafficking in Persons to support governments to draft, strengthen or amend national laws to address human trafficking.

These publications are a revision of tools first launched sixteen years ago, and incorporate progress made since then to implement the UN Protocol to Prevent, Suppress and Punish Trafficking in Persons, the world's primary legal instrument to combat human trafficking. Developments include new approaches to key concepts of the Protocol such as addressing the rights and needs of victims and an improved understanding of how to practically apply the trafficking in persons definition... more


16 December 2020
Exploited and Prosecuted: When Victims of Human Trafficking Commit Crimes
The vital role of inter-agency partnership to tackle trafficking in persons was reinforced today, during a meeting of over 20 international organizations which agreed on a plan of action to combat this global crime.

Principals of the Inter-Agency Coordination Group Against Trafficking in Persons (ICAT) the UN's leading policy forum to address human trafficking which is coordinated by the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC), met for the second time since the platform was established in 2007... more