In a startling report by Dutch newspaper, Algemeen Dagblad (AD) it has been revealed that more than a thousand girls will be blackmailed and forced into prostitution over the course of a year in the Netherlands.
The article details Watch Netherlands – a cooperative organization between the Center Against Child and Human Trafficking and Fier and Terre des Hommes, an aid organization.
In Randstad, Netherlands, Watch Netherlands operates from an action center with a dozen researchers and IT specialists who search for evidence of child exploitation after it is reported by parents, taxi drivers, or even the victims of the sexual abuse themselves.
The ADarticle makes reference to “loverboys” – sex traffickers whom “the lion’s share has a migration background”.
The report by AD also reveals that through their work, Watch Netherlands transferred more than 70 cases to authorities last year. Watch Netherlands investigates how many victims a sex trafficker ensnares, where the children are offered for sale, and where victims are kept hidden. The organization even has private detectives that are sent out to observe on location to gather evidence.
The traffickers will befriend and manipulate young girls into having sex with them and will proceed to film or take a photo during their initial sexual foray, thus blackmailing the girl.
Marijke van Overveld and Esmee Huijps, Dutch police specialists in human trafficking say of the “loverboys”:
It’s not even necessary to love and to love. Once they have a compromising video of you, that is enough for blackmail. Especially for young girls, whose parents do not know anything.
Van Overveld also points out that there are nearly 1,400 underage victims yearly. Once the blackmail is obtained, the girls are forced into prostitution. Traffickers of mostly Moroccan, Turkish, Antillean, or Roman descent abuses and lures girls into the “lucrative trade”, sometimes “earning up to 800 euros a day on a girl”.
AD also explains that the “loverboys” are also tied into other more heinous crimes such as drug and weapons trafficking. Carolien van den Honert, policy officer at the Center for Sexuality and Human Trafficking specifies:
…these are seasoned criminals… often with an online network for customer recruitment.
Watch Netherlands is actively trying to end such online trades of traffickers by deterring customers with their own “lure ads”. Customers who attempt to buy girls via the organization’s bait ads are e-mailed “Watch Netherlands knows you now, make sure we never meet you again“.
With traffickers getting smarter and using less obtuse methods – such as driving ordinary cars and luring girls using only online methods – it is a cat-and-mouse game between “loverboys” and police.
Along with Watch Netherland’s investigation and work, an emphasis is being placed on prevention – with police training focusing on recognizing signals from parents – and victims – regarding sexual abuse. Concerned family members or teachers are urged to speak up if they notice something amiss.
Small communities will continue to be rocked and manipulated by migrants with bad intentions as long as unfettered access across borders is allowed in Europe. At what point does one declare that enough is enough and the safety and security of the innocence of children comes before the well-being of refugees incompatible with Western society?