20 April 2020 | Story Amanada Tongha | Photo Anja Aucamp
Prof Beati Kruger
A light in the darkness of human trafficking. Prof Beatri Kruger is leading efforts to combat this complex crime.

Millions of people around the world fall victim to human trafficking each year. South Africa is no exception to this, “with victims exploited in various ways, including forced begging, sexual exploitation online or in brothels, as drug mules, for forced marriages, and for forced labour in factories, on farms, or as zama-zamas in mines”, according to Prof Beatri Kruger, Adjunct Professor at the Free State Centre for Human Rights in the Faculty of Law.

To help combat this heinous crime, the International Organization for Migration recently roped in Prof Kruger to facilitate a workshop for members of the Free State Trafficking Task Team on South African counter-trafficking legislation. An expert in the field of human trafficking, Prof Kruger has been a lecturer in Criminal Law in the Faculty of Law for almost 20 years before joining the Free State Centre for Human Rights as research associate in 2017.

As a member of the Free State task team, the academic works with various institutions and government departments, including the police, prosecution, social development, and education by raising awareness on what she termed as ‘modern slavery’.

“Human trafficking is a reality in every part of the world, also in Bloemfontein. To be realistic, the exploitation of trafficked persons will not be stopped easily. The lure of quick money draws perpetrators to this high-profit, low-risk crime. But I am hopeful and inspired by the crowds of brave experts and ordinary people who do their bit to pierce the trafficking darkness.”

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