World Cup & Sex Trafficking - Los Angeles News | FOX 11 LA KTTV

From Anchor Araksya Karapetyan

World Cup & Sex Trafficking

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. - The World Cup kicks off on Thursday! There will be a number of things to report on, besides the games themselves- things that we often forget or don’t even think about when it comes to international events that bring so many people together.

There is a lot going on behind the scenes…As six hundred thousand fans head to Sao Paulo for the World Cup, prostitutes are busy brushing up on their English.

In Brazil, prostitution is legal. That means lots of money can be made in the month-long soccer tournament. Sex workers have been learning common English words, from the days of the week to terms that relate to their profession. While this is going on, there is also the much darker side of the sex industry that needs to be addressed- child prostitution. The truth is, Brazilian kids, as young as 10, will hit the streets to cash in on the demand. The harsh reality is that children will be exploited without a doubt.

One report I came across revealed that kids already addicted to crack cocaine and homeless, already sell their bodies for as little as $4. Whether it’s in Recife or up in Fortaleza, a beach resort city, child sex tourism is a hotspot for cities that will host the matches. Fortaleza, for example, will host six World Cup matches.

Here is something you may find to be disturbing – the country’s age of consent is 14 - and in 2012 the courts ruled that sex with a 12-year-old did not constitute statutory rape. Child prostitution involves an entire tourism network, from tourists themselves, to hotels, to cab drivers…many factors play into this nightmare. According to the non-profit National Forum for the Prevention of Child Labour, there are about
half a million child sex workers in Brazil.

Last month, a global network of religious orders against human trafficking launched a campaign against prostitution during the World Cup. It isn’t a secret that international sporting events have attracted human traffickers in the past and sadly continue to do so. Talking about it may be just one small way to draw attention to this ongoing epidemic.

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