Sex Traffickers’ Views: A Qualitative Study into Their Perceptions of the Victim–Offender Relationship

Colinda M.B. Serie, Anja Krumeich, Anke van Dijke, Ellen de Ruiter, Linda Terpstra, Corine de Ruiter*

*Corresponding author for this work

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Until now, most of our knowledge regarding sex trafficking comes from studies of victims. Only a limited number of empirical studies have focused on those who conduct the business of sex trafficking. This article examined sex traffickers’ perceptions of the victim–offender relationship. Using a grounded theory approach, verbatim interviews with sex traffickers were analyzed. Four major themes emerged: perceptions of the initiative, the (victim–offender) relationship, their own role and work methods, and on the victims who reported to the police. The results provide a complex picture that shows variations in relationships, roles, and work (control) methods over time within the same victim–trafficker dyad as well as between individual sex traffickers.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)169-184
Number of pages15
JournalJournal of Human Trafficking
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2018

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