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South Asia

Mumbai woman guilty of running a brothel, sentenced to 7 years in prison

MUMBAI, INDIA – On 22 April 2022, a Mumbai woman was convicted after a 6-year trial and sentenced to 7 years in prison for running a brothel and exploiting trafficked women and girls for sex.

This case began on 21 July 2015, when Mumbai Police led a rescue operation at this woman’s brothel in the Kamathipura red-light district, with information provided by IJM.

Two victims of trafficking, including a 16-year-old minor, were rescued from frequent verbal and physical abuse and were brought to safety at an aftercare shelter. IJM’s social workers supported their long-term rehabilitation, and our legal team assisted the government to hold their abuser accountable under the law.

Later, the legal case was handed over to IJM’s partner, Justice Ventures International (JVI), who helped pursue justice for the survivors in court. The prosecutor relied heavily on strong arguments drafted by IJM staff in support of the survivors. The survivors also testified boldly against the trafficker and shared the truth of what had happened to them.

The final conviction took over six years due to the frequent transfer of judges and prosecutors and the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic. Along with 7 years in prison, the accused was ordered to pay a fine of 15,000 rupees (about $275 AUD), and the brothel was ordered to be permanently shut.

This has been the 113th conviction in IJM’s anti-sex trafficking program in Mumbai.

Throughout the trial, IJM was grateful to see the diligence of police in following up on the case, the victim-sensitivity of judges and prosecutors, the close cooperation of shelter home staff who supported the survivors until they were restored, and the determination of our partners at JVI who saw the case through to this important conclusion.

*Stock image. Not a survivor of sex trafficking.

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