New research could help reveal who is buying online trafficking ads

Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc welcomes Cambodian Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Home Affairs Krolahom Sar Kheng in Hanoi (Photo: VNA) Hanoi (VNA) - Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc has spoke highly of the close and effective cooperation between public security forces of Vietnam and Cambodia in preventing and combating crimes, especially crimes related to national security, drugs, economic activities, cyber crimes and human trafficking. At a meeting with Cambodian Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Home Affairs Krolahom Sar Kheng in Hanoi on August 17, PM Phuc held that amid rapid developments of the world and regional situation, the public security forces of Vietnam and Cambodia should continue working closely to effectively implement agreements reached by senior leaders of the two nations on ensuring political security, and social order and safety in each country. The two sides should coordinate to foil all schemes that are aimed at driving a wedge between Vietnam and Cambodia and undermining their friendship and solidarity, he said, urging the forces to promote the efficiency of existing cooperation mechanisms and support each other at international and multilateral forums. PM Phuc also proposed both sides create favourable conditions for Vietnamese and Cambodian nationals to settle down in each other country, suggesting that Cambodian authorities continue taking suitable measures to ensure legitimate rights of overseas Vietnamese in Cambodia. For his part, Krolahom Sar Kheng said that his visit is part of activities to mark the 50th anniversary of Vietnam-Cambodia diplomatic ties…... [read more]

NDO – Vietnam consistently fosters solidarity, close bonds and comprehensive cooperation with the Lao Party, State, Government and people, aiming to further accelerate bilateral cooperative relations between the two countries, for the benefits of their peoples, thus contributing actively to peace, stability, cooperation and development in the region and around the world, Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc has stated. Addressing a reception for Lao Minister of Public Security Somkeo Silavong in Hanoi on August 17, the PM warmly welcomed the Lao guest to officially visit Vietnam and attend exchange activities with the Vietnamese Ministry of Public Security, on the occasion of the Vietnam-Laos Solidarity and Friendship Year 2017. He congratulated the Lao Party, Government and people on their significant achievements attained over the past few years, whilst affirming that Vietnam always treasures the fine sentiments and support offered by Laos towards Vietnam during the country’s past struggle for national independence and its current cause of national construction and development. Vietnam values and wishes to strengthen the friendly relations and solidarity between the three Indochinese countries, including Vietnam, Laos and Cambodia, he stated, hailing the Vietnam-Laos relations as being special, and rare in the world. The PM suggested that the two public security forces must work together to thwart all plots by hostile forces to undermine the special Vietnam-Laos solidarity, calling for joint efforts to fight crime and build a shared borderline of peace, friendship, stability and comprehensive development. Lao Minister of Public Security Somkeo Silavong stated that his visit…... [read more]

A court in Ho Chi Minh City on Wednesday sentenced a Lao man to life imprisonment for illegal drug trafficking. KhamChanh Daovone, 31, was arrested at Tan Son Nhat International Airport on September 23, 2013 after customs officials discovered 2.4 kilograms (5.3 pounds) of cocaine in his luggage. Kham being escorted by a police officer. Photo by VnExpress/Hai Duyen. Kham claimed his girlfriend Puoy gave him the suitcase and $800 for him to travel from Laos to the Philippines in September 2013. Upon arrival, he was greeted by an African man who claimed to be Pouy's friend and took Kham's suitcase for safekeeping. The African man returned the suitcase to Kham before he set off back to Laos, but he didn't make it that far and was arrested while transiting in Ho Chi Minh City after two bags of cocaine were found hidden in the suitcase. Kham claimed he did not know the suitcase contained drugs. However, the court on Wednesday dismissed his argument and agreed that he had to take full responsibility for the crime. Prosecutors had called for the death penalty, but the court decided to show leniency, saying he was a foreigner with a good background and the drugs had not made it onto the streets. Vietnam has some of the world’s toughest drug laws. Those convicted of possessing or smuggling more than 600 grams of heroin or cocaine or more than 2.5kg of methamphetamine face the death penalty. The production or sale of 100 grams…... [read more]

The HCM City Border Guard Force’s Headquarters and the HCM City Department of Customs have worked together to uncover 48 cases and 104 people suspected of smuggling illegal goods via border lines, confiscating over VNĐ50 billion (US$2.2 million) worth of items since 2012. HCM City Department of Customs’ officers being awarded for their work in smuggling investigations. This information was revealed at a preliminary conference held on Friday (August 11) to review the results of the five years co-operation between the two forces from 2012 – 2017, during which many organisations and individuals of the customs department received awards from the Border Guard Force for their contributions to the fight against smuggling, trade fraud and counterfeits at the city’s border areas. Notably, they have discovered seven cases of smuggled elephant ivory (6 tonnes in total) from Africa, trafficking of 31.6 kg of cocaine from South America and a case of around 100 hunting rifles smuggled from Indonesia. HCM City with 46 ports is one of the country’s crucial locations for the country’s trading activities nationwide. In particular it annually receives and delivers over 65 per cent of the total import/export goods so they have to face many challenges with trade fraud and smuggling. Those two law enforcement agencies will continue to work together to tackle this issue, by organizing investigations, raids, training for officers and other activities. Many ports have yet installed scanners, but rely on declaration through border and custom officials checking by themselves. On this occasion the City…... [read more]

For the last 17 years, a special school in HCM City’s District 7 has been providing a priceless service to children of poor migrant workers struggling to eke out a living. A retired teacher at a special school in District 7 for children of poor migrants.  Every year, this school, set up under a small project called Cầu Hàn which enrolls about 60 poor children whose parents do not have enough money to send them to school. For two hours a day, Monday to Friday, these children, mostly from the district’s Tan Thanh Tay, Tan Quy and Tan Kieng wards, are taught by retired teachers. A small house with two “classrooms” and a living room serves as a makeshift school for students from first to fifth grade. “Most of the students are not good at learning, so they have to go to class from the beginning of August instead of September to revise lessons,” Do Ngoc Tuyet, 62, a retired teacher, told the Youth newspaper. Besides lessons following the curricula set by the Ministry of Education and Training, the students also learn about traffic safety, children’s rights, violence, abuse, HIV prevention and human trafficking. “Their parents are so busy with their work all day, because most of them are migrant workers and do not have time to take care their children, so we also have to teach them skills to protect themselves,” said project manager Huynh Kim Tien. Because their parents are always away, the children have to fend for…... [read more]

VietNamNet Bridge – Humane Society International - Viet Nam (HSI - Viet Nam) is calling on the South African government to honour its commitment to protect rhinos by refusing permits for an auction of rhinoceros horns. Illegal imported Rhino horns seized. — Photo: VNN The online auction is targeting buyers from the world’s two largest destinations for trafficked rhino horn — China and Viet Nam. The auction is being organised by John Hume, the world’s largest rhino farmer, on August 21 and the auction website has both a Vietnamese and Chinese language option in addition to English. HSI believes there is a significant risk that horns from this auction, even if purchased legally in South Africa, may end up being trafficked to Asian consumer markets by organised criminal syndicates. The South African government estimates that a rhino is killed for its horn approximately every eight hours in South Africa, largely to satisfy the black market demand in Viet Nam and China. The horns to be auctioned are "trimmed" from Hume’s 1,500 farmed rhinos, and purportedly aimed at the domestic rhino horn trade, which is now legal following a ruling in April by South Africa’s constitutional court, lifting a 2009 ban. However, in light of the suspicious language options on the site, the Vietnamese Government has reiterated in an official statement that according to Vietnamese law, rhino horn purchased at this auction cannot be legally exported to Viet Nam for commercial, medical or personal purposes. Vuong Tien Manh, deputy director of…... [read more]

Demand for sex with children is an emerging cause of human trafficking in the Mekong region, the United Nations said on Thursday, as it pointed to a shift in child sex webcam centers from the Philippines to Thailand. The problem had grown so much that demand for child webcam sex tourism is "outstripping the supply", Deanna Davy, senior research consultant at the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC), said at the launch of a new trafficking report in Bangkok. Thailand is a regional hub for the smuggling and trafficking of men, women, and children from poorer neighboring countries such as Cambodia and Myanmar. Many are forced to work in Thailand's sex industry and in labor intensive sectors such as fishing, construction, and agriculture, where they are sometimes subject to abuse, according to investigations by rights groups and the media. Around 4 million migrants live in Thailand, according to 2015 government data. The UNODC estimates that between 4 and 23 percent of migrants in Thailand are trafficking victims. Jeremy Douglas, regional representative of the UNODC, said recent intelligence showed a shift in child sex abuse webcam centers to Thailand from the Philippines, where authorities have tried to crack down on the illegal trade. "It used to be the Philippines but through some of our interviews we've found that it's moving here and we're seeing some intelligence indicate that a move of people setting up operations in Thailand is happening," Douglas told Reuters. He said the victims were children…... [read more]

VietNamNet Bridge – Consuming magic mushrooms has emerged as the latest trend among Vietnamese youth who are into mind-altering substances. Many people are worried about the impacts this trend could have on the youth. Local reports say magic mushrooms (Psilocybe pelliculosa), have become particularly popular among the youth who tend to consume substances like marijuana and “American grass,” slang for numerous synthetic drugs. The “magic” mushroom contains psilocybin, a hallucinogenic substance. It is said that the hallucinogenic effects can start approximately 30 minutes after the mushrooms are consumed. A person’s perceptions of color, sound and light may change. Surfaces may seem to move or ripple. Moving objects may seem to have visible trails that linger behind them. Along with these effects, some people also feel nauseous, muscle weakness, and other physical changes. Changes in perception and thinking can last between three and eight hours. The mushroom grows across wide sections of Mexico, South America, Malaysia, India and Indonesia.  Because of its effects, the mushroom has been made illegal in many countries. In Viet Nam, meanwhile, it has gained popularity among some groups of young people as a new kind of drug. It is easy to find the mushroom on many websites, promoting it as a “magic” product. According to some websites, around 30 minutes after taking the mushroom, a person feels very excited and experiences a “trip” to paradise or promised land. The websites also carry some comments from those who tried the product out of curiosity to experience the…... [read more]

The auction to be held on 21st August is by John Hume, the world’s largest rhino farmer, and the auction website has both a Vietnamese and Chinese language option in addition to English. HSI believes there is a significant risk that horns from this auction, even if purchased legally in South Africa, may end up being trafficked to Asian consumer markets by organized criminal syndicates. The South African government estimates that a rhino is killed for its horn about every eight hours in South Africa, largely to satisfy black market demand in Vietnam and China. The horn to be auctioned is ‘trimmed’ from Hume’s 1,500 farmed rhino, and purportedly aimed at the domestic rhino horn trade which is now legal following a ruling in April by South Africa’s constitutional court, lifting a 2009 ban. However, in light of the suspicious language options on the site, the Vietnamese government has reiterated in an official statement that according to Vietnamese law, rhino horn purchased at this auction could not be legally exported to Vietnam for commercial, medical or personal purposes. Manh Tien Vuong, deputy director of the Vietnam CITES Management Authority, said, “According to Decision 11/2013/QD-TTg dated 24/01/2013, Vietnam prohibits all trade in white and black rhinoceroses and their products with only narrow exceptions for purposes such as law enforcement, political, scientific research, and zoological display.”   This auction comes at a time when rhino poaching is at crisis point,…... [read more]

More than 1.5 million tonnes of illegal waste were seized in June in the biggest ever such global clampdown organised with 43 police forces, Interpol announced Tuesday. More than 300 people were cited for violations over disposal of waste, much of which ends up polluting the sea or land and constituting a health hazard. "It shows what can be accomplished when countries work together to detect, disrupt and deter pollution crime," said Joseph Poux of the U.S. Department of Justice. The month-long operation in June, called "30 Days of Action," was aimed at giving a warning to criminals specialised in this kind of traffic, he said. "The organized criminal groups involved in illicit waste trafficking should be warned that they will be caught," he said in a statement issued by the Lyon-based Interpol. Most waste seized was metal or electronic, generally related to the car industry. Some 326 individuals and 244 companies were cited in criminal or administrative violations. Asia and Africa were the main destinations for waste illegally exported from Europe and North America for dumping or processing, with trafficking also occurring between countries within Europe. Waste crime is seen as a low-risk, high-reward business for organised networks which exploit differences in legislation between countries and regions, as well as weak enforcement systems, it said. The environmental impact is potentially enormous. "Waste crime is a worldwide concern: of the 275 million tons of plastic waste generated in 2010, up to 12.7 million tonnes were illegally dumped into the…... [read more]

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