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    The Government of Luxembourg combats trafficking of human beings (THB) which is a serious crime and a gross violation of fundamental rights by a multidisciplinary approach as recommended by international and regional organisations (UNO, EU, OSCE, Council of Europe) in the framework of normative texts, projects and awareness campaigns.

    Luxembourg’s policy concerning the trafficking of human beings focuses on three main areas:

    1. Prevention
    2. Protection and promotion of the victims’ rights
    3. Prosecution of the perpetrators and co-perpetrators

    Luxembourg is a destination country for women trafficked primarily from Ukraine, Brazil, Romania, Bulgaria and Nigeria for commercial sexual exploitation. Thus far, only one case of forced labour has been identified in Luxembourg in 2010.

    Currently the Government of Luxembourg is pursuing its combat against trafficking of human beings (THB) by its multidisciplinary approach.

    In this respect, Luxembourg has voted several laws approving the following European and International agreements:

    • Law of 16th July 2011 approving a) the Council of Europe Convention on the Protection of Children against Sexual Exploitation and Sexual Abuse (CETS 201) and b) the Optional Protocol of the Convention of the United Nations on the Sale of Children, Child Prostitution and Child Pornography and modifying the correspondent articles in the Criminal Law Code
    • Law of 21st July 2012 approving the Protocol against the Smuggling of Migrants by Land, Air and Sea, supplementing the United Nations Convention against Transnational Organized Crime (“Palermo Protocol”)
    • Law of 27th February 2012 adapting the national law to the provisions of the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court, approved by a law of the 17th August 2000


    A summary of this text is available in the official language of the country.




    The law of 31st May 1999 concerning the trafficking of human beings introduced a new chapter in the Criminal Code. It modified article 379 of the Criminal Code by introducing the offences of trafficking of human beings for sexual exploitation and the sexual exploitation of children.

    The amendments to the Criminal Code distinguish human trafficking from smuggling and illegal migration, and expand the definition of human trafficking to include forced labour or services, the exploitation of criminal activities and the removal of organs.

    Penalties prescribed in the new legislation increased from a maximum prison term of three years, to a range of five to 10 years.

    Luxembourg legislation provides for the confiscation of assets and proceeds of crime in trafficking cases. It also provides for compensation for victims.

    In 2008, the government adopted immigration legislation that provides victims of human trafficking who are third country nationals, with a 90-day reflection period during which a person cannot be removed from Luxembourg territory, and which lays down conditions under which a victim is granted a residence permit after the reflection period.

    In 2009, the parliament adopted an act establishing a framework of protection and assistance for victims of human trafficking. Two proposals for subordinate legislation to enforce this act will be soon submitted for approval by the government. One concerns the mode of enforcement of the assistance. The other relates to the structure and the missions of the Committee to monitor trafficking in human beings.

    The legislation does not establish prostitution as such (i.e. the selling of sexual services) as a criminal offence.

    National Strategy/National Action Plan

    The government has adopted a National Action Plan on Equality of Women and Men for 2009-2014.

    The fourth point of the Action Plan envisages revision of the domestic violence legislation, the implementation of a monitoring system for legislation on human trafficking, research on prostitution in order to know its evolution at local and national level, and an analysis of alternatives to the Swedish model of criminalising the purchase of sexual services.

    Coordination of anti-trafficking actions at a national level

    The national coordination of anti-trafficking polices is currently done on an ad-hoc basis. However, the law establishing a framework of protection and assistance for victims of human trafficking adopted by the parliament the 8th May 2009 (see point 2.1) proposes to establish a Committee to monitor trafficking in human beings.

    However, to become effective, the proposal of subordinate legislation to this act concerning the structure and the missions of the Committee has to be adopted by the Parliament

    The Committee will be responsible for establishing mechanisms to coordinate and monitor prevention and to evaluate the threat posed by trafficking. It will also collect and analyse statistical data. Furthermore, it will supervise implementation of the relevant legislation to combat trafficking in human beings and evaluate such process. It will oversee the enforcement of its provisions, which are aimed at strengthening the rights of victims and improving witness protection. At the same time, it will focus on enforcing legal provisions guiding free movement, and analyse problems related to the implementation of law.

    The Committee will be composed of representatives of public bodies responsible for the implementation of the proposal, representatives of assistance services, and representatives of approved organisations.

    National Rapporteur or equivalent mechanisms

    Luxembourg has not appointed a National Rapporteur or an equivalent mechanism. The authorities are currently analysing the need for a National Rapporteur to complement the work of the Committee.

    The most important challenges at national level

    The most important challenge Luxembourg faces at national level is to establish clear procedural rules in order to guarantee an effective cooperation between the different actors involved in the fight against trafficking of human beings, to define the respective roles of the persons involved and to assure an effective assistance to victims of trafficking of human beings.



    In 2008, the government focused its preventive actions on demand-reduction campaigns. For instance, the Ministry of Equal Opportunity funded a sex trafficking demand reduction poster campaign bearing the slogan, If you hire a prostitute, you are financing human trafficking.

    The ITM public body (Inspection du travail et des mines/ Factory and Mines Inspectorships) is a control authority under the guardianship of the Ministry of Labour. It controls and supervises correct implementation of labour laws, and evaluates such processes.

    Assistance and support provided to victims

    The government does not provide any long-term shelter or housing benefits for victims of trafficking. However, during 2009, the government continued its funding of two non-governmental organisations which provide services for women in distress and female human trafficking victims.

    The government has not established a formal referral mechanism for victims of human trafficking. There have been no minors encountered during controls or investigations. So far, no reports or studies have been undertaken. During the reporting period of the United States Trafficking in Persons (TIP) report 2010, police identified 21 victims of forced prostitution recruited for work in Luxembourg cabarets, compared with 10 the previous year. Law enforcement authorities reportedly referred identified trafficking victims to NGOs and provided them with short-term shelter and basic assistance. There have been no minors encountered during controls or investigations. So far, no reports or studies have been undertaken.

    The government has a stated policy of ensuring that victims are not punished for unlawful acts committed as a direct result of their being trafficked.

    In 2008, immigration legislation was adopted that provides for the granting of temporary residence permits to victims of human trafficking who are third country nationals for a 90 day reflection period. The government encourages victims to participate in the investigation and prosecution of trafficking offenders during the reflection period, though the granting of the reflection period is not conditional on victims’ cooperation with authorities. During the 90 day reflection period, victims are entitled to protection and assistance measures. After the reflection period, victims are granted a residence permit for a renewable six month period if the conditions in immigration legislation are met.

    Special protective measures for children

    Until now no minors have been encountered during investigations in Luxembourg. However, child victims of trafficking would be placed in a shelter for juveniles, which offer specialised services for trafficking victims.

    Interviews with children by the Judicial Police section take place in special children-friendly rooms designed and adapted for this purpose.

    Furthermore, if a child is a victim or a witness of trafficking of human beings, the recording of the hearing is mandatory. This record can be used as proof and can be reproduced in the courtroom in order to avoid secondary victimisation. (Articles 48-1, 79-1 and 158 of the code of criminal procedure). The child may also be accompanied during the hearing by an adult of his/her choice, unless a reasoned decision has been made to the contrary in respect of that person. The hearing of children can also take place without the presence of the public.

    The 2009 act on the assistance and protection of victims of human trafficking, establishes the right of child victims of human trafficking to be represented by a guardian if they are not accompanied by an adult until the authority of their country of origin can take charge of them.

    Investigation and prosecution

    According to the 2010 US TIP Report, the Luxembourg judicial authorities prosecuted and convicted six sex trafficking offenders during the reporting period, compared with seven from the previous year. Sentences imposed on those convicted ranged from two to three years’ imprisonment with fines,

    Latest initiatives/activities related to anti-trafficking policy you would like to share with other Members of the Informal Network

    The government has adopted a national Action Plan about Equality of Women and Men 2009-2014 (Plan d’action national de l’égalité des femmes et des hommes) which plans at  point 4  “Violence, Human Trafficking and Prostitution” the revision of the domestic violence legislation,  the implementing of a monitoring system of legislation about human trafficking, scientific follow up of the phenomena of prostitution in order to know its evolution at local and national level and analysis of alternatives to the Swedish model of prostitution legislation.

    1. The Ministry of equal opportunities organized a conference in June 2012 about prostitution and human trafficking where Mrs. Sophie HOFFMANN represented the Ministry of Justice and spoke about the existing legal framework.
    2. A delegation of the Council of Europe's Group of Experts on Action against Trafficking in Human Beings (GRETA) will carry out a country visit to Luxembourg from 11 to 14 December 2012. The visit is organized in the context of the first round of evaluation of the implementation of the Council of Europe Convention on Action against Trafficking in Human Beings (2010-2013).

    Given the geographical position of Luxembourg in the Central Europe, the national police forces closely cooperate with other border countries. The cooperation takes place in the framework of international police cooperation, such as the agreement between ‘EUROPOL member and third party countries’, tri-lateral agreements (e.g. the Benelux Treaty), multi-lateral treaties (e.g. the Prüm Treaty), and the convention on police cooperation (from 2000).

    Future plans in terms of implementation of the directive 2011/36/EU
    A working group composed of different actors involved in the fight against trafficking of human beings is currently analysing the legislative and practical modifications to be done in order to implement the directive of the European Parliament and of the Council on preventing and combating trafficking in human beings, and protecting victims, repealing Framework Decision 2002/629/JHA.

    The bill of law implementing the above mentioned directive should be submitted to the Government of Luxembourg by the end of the year 2012.


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