Girls, often aged between 12 and 16 years, from the more impoverished areas are subjected to commercial sexual exploitation under ‘prison-like’ conditions. [reference]


This map of Mekong Sub-region depicts a few of the sub-region’s child trafficking flows, such as:

  • Children trafficked from Cambodia to Thailand for begging or for the sale of small items
  • Girls trafficked from Vietnam to Cambodia or from Myanmar to Thailand for sexual exploitation
  • Boys trafficked from Myanmar to Thailand to work in Thai factories and on fishing boats
  • Laotian girls trafficked to Thailand for domestic or factory work
  • Girls trafficked from rural areas of Cambodia to urban centers for sexual exploitation

WHY are children sold?

  • Sexual exploitation, such as through child prostitution or the production of child pornography
  • Marriage
  • Adoption
  • Begging and the sale of small items
  • Various forms of bonded and exploitative labour, such as domestic services, factory work, agriculture, fishing, construction

HOW are children trafficked?

  • Introduction to work by an acquaintance
  • Social media
  • Deception by an acquaintance or relative
  • Outright force
  • Abduction or kidnapping
  • Abuse of a position of authority
  • Provision of payments or benefits to garner the consent of an adult in a controlling position over a child
  • Recruitment or false recruitment
  • Threat or continued use of force or other forms of coercion

WHAT happens once they’re with the traffickers?

Following the act of trafficking, further tactics are taken to control child victims while they are being exploited. Such examples include:

  • Physical or sexual violence
  • Debt bondage
  • Social isolation
  • Restriction of personal freedom or confinement
  • Confiscation of identification cards and legal documents

“Human trafficking is a significant problem… women are particularly vulnerable to trafficking into the forced domestic and sex industries in countries all over the world, lured by seemingly genuine job offers, but often exploited via debt bondage.” [reference]

418 Fact Page