The study, produced by Dr Marija Jovanovic and Dr Maayan Niezna, considers the operationalisation of the non-punishment principle set out in Article 26 of the Council of Europe Convention on Action against Trafficking in Human Beings, following the 2021 judgment of the European Court of Human Rights in the case of V.C.L. and A.N v United Kingdom.
In this case, the Court found the United Kingdom in breach of Articles 4 and 6 of the European Convention on Human Rights for failing to identify and consider the protection needs of two Vietnamese children, both of whom were potential victims of human trafficking, when they were prosecuted and convicted of drug offences in the UK.
The study provides a comprehensive analysis of this decision and considers how the UK Government sought to comply with the ruling by making changes in domestic law and policy. It also considers potential implications of these developments for the interpretation and application of the non-punishment principle in other Council of Europe member States.
The publication can be downloaded free online.
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