R. v. LM, MB, DG, Tabot, and Tijani

[2010] EWCA Crim 2327, [2011] 1 Cr App R 12 (2010)

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R. v. LM, MB, DG, Tabot, and Tijani

England and Wales Court of Appeal, Criminal Division
[2010] EWCA Crim 2327, [2011] 1 Cr App R 12 (2010)

RW

Facts

[Editor’s Note: the casebook International Criminal Law: Cases and Materials (Wayne McCormack, ed., 1st ed. 2015) erroneously identifies “DG” as “DM” in the case title.] United Kingdom (UK) crown prosecutors successfully prosecuted three cases involving offenders who themselves were victims of sex traffickers who had brought them into the UK illegally. The first case involved LM, MB, and DG (defendants), three ex-prostitutes who helped their pimps import and train replacement prostitutes. Evidence established that the women had not used coercive force against the new prostitutes and had acted under the influence of their pimps—albeit influence that fell short of establishing the defense of duress. The prosecutors later admitted that under these circumstances, no public interest was served by continuing the prosecution. The second case involved Betti Tabot (defendant), a Cameroonian woman arrested for traveling under forged identity papers. Evidence did not corroborate Tabot’s claim to have used those papers only to escape her sex traffickers. The third case involved Yutunde Tijani (defendant), a Nigerian woman arrested for using forged papers to remain in the UK illegally. Evidence established that at the time of her arrest, Tijani had been entirely free from exploitation for several months. LM, MB, DG, Tabot, and Tijani all appealed their convictions. The England and Wales Court of Appeal considered the appeals in light of the UK’s obligations as signatory to the European Anti-Trafficking Convention.

Rule of Law

Issue

Holding and Reasoning (Hughes, J.)

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