SEX TOURISM IN COLOMBIA

SEX TOURISM IN COLOMBIA

BnB Colombia Tours does not condone, encourage, facilitate, or support sex tourism in any form whatsoever!

The following article has been written with the intention to inform and warn of the dangers of sex tourism in Colombia. BnB Colombia Tours does not condone, encourage, facilitate, or support sex tourism in any form whatsoever!

Colombia is a wonderful place to visit. Gorgeous beaches, incredible landscapes, and vibrating cities with a rich culture. Much to appreciate and enjoy. However, for some travelers, Colombia is also notorious for its prostitution industry and for many at the top of the list for sex tourism.

Colombian women are considered to be some of the most beautiful women in the world and perhaps this is one factor that has led to sex tourism flourishing in the country. The government is making strong efforts to curb areas that are illegal, like child prostitution.

BnB Colombia Tours does not condone, encourage, facilitate, or support sex tourism in any form whatsoever!

Like many goods and services in a global economy, sexual satisfaction is being outsourced to places with the best product and service, at the lowest possible price.
In Colombia, especially in the major cities, a sex tourist does not need to look far to find easy, available, and affordable sex workers.

Tourism in Colombia is crucial for its economy. It is responsible for over two percent of the country´s GDP and even more importantly, generates over half of its foreign exchange. However, this comes with a dark consequence. Colombia is one of the twelve percent of countries worldwide where prostitution is legal.

Sex tourism has become a major concern in Colombian cities including Medellin, Bogotá, Cali, and Cartagena. While prostitution itself might be legal in Colombia, pimping or organizing sexual tourism is not. Medellín recently began a crackdown, with the arrest of a foreign sex tourism provider.

Penalties are severe with up to eight years incarceration for facilitating prostitution.  

Offenses against foreigners seem to disproportionately happen to young males looking for excitement, drugs, and sex. Go looking for trouble and it will not be long before trouble finds you.

Gangs target foreigners using popular dating applications, especially in Cartagena, as it is one of the most attractive and popular destinations in Colombia. However, this fabulous city is also known as one of the prime areas for sex tourism.

Even aside from its illegality, sex tourism has become increasingly dangerous for sex workers and tourists alike, causing concern at all levels. There is serious alarm about the control criminal gangs exercise over brothels and their operations.

Prostitution is one of the oldest and most steadfast professions, with its earliest records dating back thousands of years.

Despite all the odds, the practice and profession have continued to flourish. Some countries have tried to diminish the negative impact by pronouncing the business as illegal. However, patrons still choose to go where it is legal to partake. Such subtleties are a basic reason why prostitution in Colombia is thriving. The trade is legally flawed and has become very risky for tourists.

The influx of Venezuelan migrants entering Colombia over the last few years has compounded the matter. Over 2 million have crossed the border, with many entering the sex trade.

An international NGO interviewed 2,216 Venezuelan migrants who arrived in Colombia between 2019 and 2021. 907 reported experiencing sex trafficking or exploitation – 324 of those in 2021 alone. This is connected to a 23% increase in identified trafficking victims from 2019 to 2021 and a 20% increase in foreign national victims of trafficking in the first four months of 2022. Organized crime groups coerce young Venezuelans into sex work. This makes the risk significantly higher for tourists participating in the trade. They are unaware of the local norms and dangers and are more likely to fall victim to people who want to take advantage of their naivety.

Sex tourism can be very dangerous for customers. Criminal groups have an all-embracing influence over the running of brothels and are often the primary people involved in sex trafficking.

Many sex workers feel desperate thanks to the low income they achieve as a result of manipulation from criminal groups and tourists, so they take matters into their own hands to earn extra revenue.
17% of the people working as sex traders have reportedly been forced into sex work, while over 28% have been physically assaulted by clients and co-workers. More than 70% of the people who have suffered say that they never filed a police report.

BnB Colombia Tours does not condone, encourage, facilitate, or support sex tourism in any form whatsoever!

The sex trafficking of Colombian and Venezuelan women and children is especially concerning. Consequently, more frequent arrests are now being made and convictions obtained to try to deter this activity. According to the latest information, 15% of the sex workers in Bogotá are under 18.

A recent report noted that despite more than two thousand cases of child trafficking coming to light in the last ten years, the system had processed only fifty-four convictions. In 2019 alone, Colombian authorities identified one hundred twenty-four victims of sex trafficking and there is more evidence suggesting that 12% of sex workers are children. Obviously, more work is to be done!

12% of sex workers are children!

Criminals in Colombia often use drugs to subdue their victims, (the sex tourist.) This includes the use of scopolamine, which temporarily incapacitates unsuspecting victims. Victims quickly become disoriented and are vulnerable to robbery, sexual assault, and other crimes.

More social problems intertwined with sex tourism:

  • A lady of the night claims a false pregnancy to obtain money on an ongoing basis.
  • Elevating the service charge without notice and threatening to call the police because you did not pay your bill to the lady as had been agreed. They work with the local police to enforce payment.
  • A sex worker may use a fake ID to extort more money. Minors will use a fake ID and then have sexual relations, later using this as proof to manipulate and extort additional money from the client. If a minor uses a fake ID, it does not matter. Once you are a client of a sex worker you can still be charged for having sex with a minor.
  • Using videos or pictures to blackmail you via social media.
  • Alleging rape or violence took place to extort money.

BnB Colombia Tours does not condone, encourage, facilitate, or support sex tourism in any form whatsoever!

As previously mentioned, child prostitution is illegal in Colombia and people involved will be jailed when caught. In a coordinated effort between the National Police, Office of the Attorney General, and Migración Colombia, recently 18 individuals were arrested in the port city of Cartagena in 13 separate raids as part of Operation Vesta. Authorities claim sophisticated criminal networks are behind Cartagena’s sex and child abuse industry.

The simplest way to avoid trouble is to refrain from getting involved with sex tourism in the first instance.

Exploitation has worsened in the past few years, putting both sex workers and sex tourists at significant risk. Enforcement of the law is now in top gear, so be warned! Learn about the incredible risks in Colombia of sex tourism and its massive dangers before traveling.

BnB Colombia Tours does not condone, encourage, facilitate, or support sex tourism in any form whatsoever!

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