The government increased law enforcement efforts. The 2014 Law on the Criminalization of Infractions Surrounding Money Laundering criminalized sex trafficking and labor trafficking. Article 18 criminalized slavery and servitude, as well as the buying and selling of a child under 14 years of age for adoption or for slavery, with a penalty of seven to 15 years’ imprisonment. Article 19 criminalized the trafficking of adults and children for the purpose of sexual exploitation, forced labor, or trafficking in organs and prescribed penalties of eight to 12 years’ imprisonment. These penalties were sufficiently stringent, and with regard to sex trafficking, commensurate with the penalties for other serious crimes, such as rape. Additional provisions in the law also criminalized forms of sex trafficking. Article 20 criminalized enticing or forcing a person to practice prostitution in a foreign country, with a penalty of two to 10 years’ imprisonment. Article 21 criminalized pimping using force, fraud, or coercion of adults and prescribed penalties of one to 6 years’ imprisonment. Article 22 criminalized “pimping of minors” under the age of 18 and prescribed penalties of two to 10 years’ imprisonment; if force, fraud or coercion was used or the child was less than 14 years old, the penalties were increased to five to 12 years’ imprisonment. Article 23 made it a crime to entice children to engage in prostitution in a foreign country, with sentences of three to 12 years’ imprisonment; with force, fraud or coercion, the sentence was increased to three to 15 years’ imprisonment.
The government investigated 15 potential trafficking cases, 13 for forced labor, one for sex trafficking, and one for an unknown type of trafficking, compared with 23 investigations in the previous reporting period. Eleven of the cases originated in Cunene Province, which borders Namibia, two cases were in Zaire province, and the provinces of Huila and Luanda each had one case. The investigations involved at least 70 potential child and adult victims, primarily Angolan, and at least 21 perpetrators, primarily from Angola, Namibia, or the DRC. The government prosecuted 27 potential traffickers, a significant increase compared with prosecuting five alleged traffickers in the previous reporting period. The government convicted 10 traffickers—one more than during the previous reporting period. Nine of the 10 convictions were for an unknown type of trafficking that occurred in Cunene province and one conviction was for child sex trafficking in Luanda; sentences ranged from nine months to three years’ imprisonment. In one child sex trafficking case involving a 16-year-old girl, the court sentenced the trafficker to only one year. The government charged an Angolan border guard in Cunene province for allegedly conspiring with a citizen of Namibia to force a woman and five boys into exploitative labor. In February, the government charged an Angolan army officer with smuggling and an investigation into a potential trafficking nexus was ongoing at the close of the reporting period. In March, the government charged five police officers with trafficking in persons, forced labor, organized crime, and falsification of documents for allegedly conspiring to force six Angolan minors to beg in Portugal, Italy, and France. The Angolan government cooperated with European authorities to share evidence and in order to locate one victim. The other five children were in protective care in Angola.
In coordination with international organizations, the government led training for front-line responders on all aspects of combating human trafficking, including for border guard and migration officers, investigative police, prosecutors, judges, and NGO legal counsel. In partnership with an international organization, the government trained 157 officials on the SADC data collection tool, which resulted in more comprehensive reporting of law enforcement data during the reporting period. The Ministry of Justice and Human Rights (MJHR) conducted three workshops on victim identification for Ministry of Interior (MOI) officers. The MJHR also trained 298 police officers at the police institute, and the National Police Academy continued to train officers on human trafficking provisions in the anti-trafficking law. In partnership with an international organization, MOI conducted a workshop for 25 interagency participants for the harmonization of the national referral mechanism. The MJHR trained 50 officials at the international airport in Luanda. The government increased joint law enforcement cooperation during the reporting period, actively engaging with authorities in Brazil, DRC, France, Namibia, Portugal, South Africa, and Zambia on investigations of potential trafficking cases. Angolan and Portuguese officials used their judicial cooperation agreement to facilitate the return of three Angolan children from Portugal; a second investigation was ongoing at the close of the reporting period. The government worked with international experts to improve law enforcement cooperation with regard to transnational criminal networks.