MUMBAI, INDIA – On April 22, 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 July 21, 2015, when Mumbai Police led a rescue operation at this woman’s brothel in the Kamathipura red-light district, with the information provided by IJM.
Two victims of trafficking—one major and one 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 proved 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 $250 CAD), and the brothel was ordered to be permanently shut down.
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.