The Crisis of a Definition: Human Trafficking in Bulgarian Law
Amsterdam Law Forum, Vol. 5, No. 1, pp. 64-79, 2013
16 Pages Posted: 9 Apr 2013
Date Written: April 1, 2013
This article develops two arguments. First, at a national level in Bulgaria, the human trafficking framework is inoperable for identifying abuses worthy of consideration. By comparing the Bulgarian criminal law definition of human trafficking with the international law definition, I argue that the national criminal law definition is overly inclusive. This state of the Bulgarian criminal law makes it difficult to undertake a realistic assessment of the problem. Second, I submit that because the focus in Bulgaria has been exclusively directed towards the crime of human trafficking, the fact that the abuses of slavery, servitude and forced labour as such have not been criminalised at a domestic level has remained ignored. Thus, abuses that constitute slavery, servitude and forced labour, but do not manifest elements of human trafficking, might be left without proper investigation and prosecution.
Keywords: Bulgarian criminal law, human trafficking, slavery, servitude, forced labour, Palermo Protocol, Bulgarian law, Stoyanova
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