Trends in Organized Crime

, Volume 11, Issue 1, pp 30–41 | Cite as

Sex trafficking: an exploratory study interviewing traffickers

  • Emily I. TroshynskiEmail author
  • Jennifer K. Blank


This paper presents the research methodology of an exploratory study interviewing human traffickers. Utilizing open-ended, semi-structured qualitative interviews with traffickers, exploratory research was conducted in 2003. With an overall goal of understanding the human trafficking phenomenon from the standpoint of those individuals who support, reproduce, and actively work to sustain it, our research questions focused on how traffickers make sense of their position within the illegal market of sex trafficking. Other thematic questions included characteristics and personal dimensions of the traffickers, reasons they entered the business, their perceptions of the business, and their opinions of those they traffic. For the purpose of this paper, we will address the difficulty and simplicity of conducting interviews with human traffickers. Information about the research project in general, methods used, ethical considerations, and thematic scope will also be addressed with a final discussion section highlighting advantages and disadvantages of methods used.


Trafficking Human trafficking Sex trafficking Interviews 


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Copyright information

© Springer Science & Business Media, LLC 2007

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Criminology, Law and SocietyUniversity of California, IrvineIrvineUSA
  2. 2.Middlesex UniversityLondonEngland

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