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By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

12/3/2013 (1 year ago)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

Brazil has become a major destination for sex tourism.

Ahead of the 2014 World Cup, attention is focusing on Brazil and many of its social ills. Of particular concern is the epidemic of child prostitution as the country becomes a major destination for sex tourism.

The number of prostitutes, especially children, working in Brazil is increasing ahead of the World Cup.

The number of prostitutes, especially children, working in Brazil is increasing ahead of the World Cup.

Highlights

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

12/3/2013 (1 year ago)

Published in Americas

Keywords: Brazilian, teen, girls, sex, prostitutes, World Cup, law, enforcement, abuse, drugs, money


SAO PAOLO, BRAZIL (Catholic Online) - The child sex industry in Brazil is booming as the industry has grown five-fold worldwide since 2001. Thanks to the internet and more sophisticated operations, more people around the world can come to Brazil, among other countries, to prey upon young children.

According to UNICEF, 100,000 children are presently employed in the worldwide sex trade. Many of them in Brazil.

Unlike in many countries, where authorities turn a blind eye to such practices, Brazilian authorities actually work to crack down on child sex trade, but doing so is proving very difficult.

First, there's the issue of supply. Life in parts of Brazil is very hard and children face some of the greatest hardships. Often subjected to abuse and drugs at a young age, many children feel abuse is normal. Some girls have expressed surprise that their work as prostitutes should be frowned upon.

Many girls work the streets on their own accord-at least initially, and are eventually recruited by pimps who ensure they work hard and turn a tidy profit. Of course, all of the activity is predatory, from the men who pick them up, to the people who keep the girls working.

When authorities manage to make an arrest, prostitutes commonly change their stories or refuse to cooperate. Only a tiny fraction of the sex cases being worked by Brazilian authorities actually involve underage prostitution. A smaller fraction of those cases will actually lead to punishment for the perpetrators.

So, with a degree of impunity, the child sex trade is ramping up for the World Cup, when nearly a million visitors will converge on host cities. Most of those visitors will be intent on watching the games, but some will be men with a more repulsive appetite, and thanks to the work of organized crime, a weak economy, and inadequate enforcement, there will be plenty of poor, abused children ready to meet them.

Brazilian authorities plan to stage a crackdown during the event, but with the industry booming there's little hope of stemming the tide of the ongoing tragedy of industrialized child abuse.

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