A 2004 law criminalized trafficking in persons by means of threat or use of force, coercion, abuse of power, or abuse of a victim’s position of vulnerability for purposes of prostitution, slavery, or forced marriage.
The prescribed penalty under this law is up to 10 years imprisonment for the trafficking of adults and a penalty of 10 years imprisonment if the offense involved a child victim.
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The government did not encourage trafficking victims to assist in the investigation or prosecution of traffickers and did not provide witness support services.
It did not provide foreign trafficking victims legal alternatives to their removal to countries in which they may face hardship or retribution.
For the eighth consecutive year, the State Department reported that Iran’s government “does not fully meet the minimum standards for the elimination of trafficking and is not making significant efforts to do so.” The Islamic Republic was rated a tier three country, the lowest ranking issued in the 2018 Trafficking in Persons Report. The Government of Iran does not fully meet the minimum standards for the elimination of trafficking and is not making significant efforts to do so; therefore Iran remained on Tier 3.
Despite the lack of significant efforts, the government took some steps to address trafficking, including steps to ratify the UN Convention against Transnational Organized Crime (UNTOC).
Moreover, female victims of sexual abuse, including sex trafficking victims, faced prosecution for adultery, which is defined as sexual relations outside of marriage and is punishable by death.