Dniprodzerzhynsk: arrest on suspicion of human trafficking involving disabled people


A 50-year-old woman from Dniprodzerzhynsk has been detained at a border crossing between Ukraine and Russia. Officers from the Dniprodzerzhynsk Anti-trafficking Unit of the Ministry of Internal Affairs have documented evidence of her recruitment of Ukrainian nationals with obvious physical disabilities. Taking advantage of their difficult material situation, she is alleged to have had them sent to Moscow and Poland where they were “sold” to be forced into begging.

In February 2007 she is alleged to have recruited a 27-year-old Dniprodzerzhynsk resident with 1st group (most serious) disability and had him unlawfully taken by train across the border in order for him to be “sold” for begging in Moscow. Criminal proceedings have been initiated over this under a charge of human trafficking.

Begging in Moscow

It is possible readers have witnessed the kind of exploitation which the woman is accused of. In Moscow, where the metro stations are often packed, people in wheelchairs or without legs, on a kind of trolley, are brought into the station and sit there for hours. Presumably there is somebody around collecting the money from time to time, since even when you know what kind of racket it is, it is near impossible not to give something. You hope only that the person receives something.  There are others who can walk only with great difficulty who are sent onto roads to ask for money from drivers when they stop at the lights. (translator)

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