Georgian law enforcement officials introduced to pro-active practices of combating trafficking in children through social media

Georgian law enforcement officials attending a training on practices of combating trafficking in children through social media.

On 11 - 12 December 2023, 21 prosecutors and police investigators participated in a training to hone their skills in conducting pro-active investigations in combating trafficking in children by use of social media and other digital platforms.

A police official from the Netherlands guided his Georgian colleagues through the theoretical and practical aspects of trafficking in children and how traffickers use social media and other digital platforms to entice vulnerable girls and boys for the ultimate purpose of their exploitation.

The second day of the training was dedicated to pro-active techniques, such as the creation of so-called “honey pot” accounts, which are meant to lure traffickers into engaging in online communication, thereby improving the understanding of investigators of their criminal modus operandi. This kind of pro-active investigation method, while not widespread in Georgia’s investigative practice, has produced interesting results in European countries, where police have specialized human resources and state-of-the-art technical equipment to conduct such investigations.

This course took place as part of the project “Improved Specialization in Migration Governance and Integrated Border Management in Georgia (SPECS)”, which is funded by the European Union in its quest to support Georgia in the implementation of the EU-Georgia Association Agreement. This project runs from October 2023 until May 2025.