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Commission welcomes first human trafficking conviction

Graphic: Dr Jackie Blue

The case serves as a strong reminder that businesses exploiting migrant workers will not go unpunished, says the Commission.

The Human Rights Commission has welcomed New Zealand's first human trafficking conviction, saying it serves a strong reminder that businesses exploiting migrant workers will not go unpunished.

On 15 September 2016, Feroz Ali was found guilty in the Auckland High Court of 15 people trafficking charges and guilty of 15 charges for aiding and abetting a person to unlawfully enter New Zealand.

Equal Employment Commissioner Dr Jackie Blue says the conviction is monumental for victims of human trafficking.

"It is a reminder to New Zealanders that we are not immune to human rights issues, such as human trafficking, and to businesses to ensure they are not party to these sorts of crimes," she said.

"Migrant workers are crucial to our economy and have the same rights as all workers in New Zealand. Businesses have a responsibility to ensure they are respecting the human rights of all their employees – this includes migrant workers.

"Our Government committed to proactively target employers that exploit migrant workers in the NZ Human Rights National Plan of Action and we are pleased to see this has taken place.

"It is crucial that the Government now update the National Plan of Action to Prevent People Trafficking, which sets out the Government's strategy for responding to the complex crime of human trafficking and protecting victims."

Date: 15 September 2016

Source: New Zealand Human Rights Commission

Image credits

  1. Dr Jackie Blue - New Zealand Human Rights Commission