What is human trafficking and forced labor?

I’m sure you’ve heard of human trafficking. It is a practice that involves the purchase and sale of human beings for sexual and/or economic exploitation.

Human trafficking takes various forms-women are often forced into prostitution, but also into other jobs (for example, being kept in homes as housekeepers).

You may have read or heard of people who had to work in fields or construction for several hours a day, without pay and in poor conditions, often guarded by armed guards.


You may also have heard of people being forced to steal or beg. These people are victims of trafficking!

Human trafficking is a human rights violation that often involves physical or mental violence, rape, kidnapping and enslavement. It is also a serious crime, most often International, for which it is punishable in Poland and other countries of the European Union.

The Criminal Code says: “Anyone who commits human trafficking shall be subject to imprisonment for a maximum of 3 years. (Article 189A. § 1 of the Criminal Code).

However, you can take care of your safety and minimise the risk of becoming a victim of trafficking…

Learn the legal aspects of human trafficking.What is human trafficking and forced labor?

Human trafficking, called 21st century slavery, is a crime against human freedom (chapter XXIII of the Criminal Code) of a conventional nature, prosecuted under international agreements to which Poland is a party.

Until recently, this crime was placed in a group of crimes against public order, which was changed by the amendment of the Criminal Code and other laws of 20 May 2010, which came into force on 8 September 2010, and this is a change in the right direction because the fundamental good that trafficking offenders can engage in is the freedom of their victims.

The current provision of Article 189A § 1 of the CC (previously 253 § 1 of the CC) is worded very clearly.
Anyone who commits trafficking in human beings is subject to imprisonment for a maximum of 3 years.

The threat of such punishment means that human trafficking is a crime, an act in which the Legislature sees a high level of social harm. Put simply, this is a very serious crime and a threat to the legal order. It is also a crime to prepare for trafficking in human beings (novum) and not to notify law enforcement authorities if there is credible information about the preparation, attempted or execution of trafficking in human beings (novum). This offence is prosecuted out of office, i.e. regardless of the will of the victim. It is therefore necessary to answer the question of what is the reason for this, what human trafficking is about and why it actually deserves such an ill-advised criminal repression.

That is because it reconciles with the most sensitive spheres of human life, the right to decide about himself, about his life, about his choice of place of residence and manner of conduct. Man becomes a commodity of commercial value, which is determined by its suitability for the purposes intended by the perpetrators. Most commonly, it is sexual or economic exploitation, including forced labour, begging, forced theft or other crimes, and forced organ harvesting.

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