Commercial Transactions in Children: The Case of Ghana

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Abstract

The current article represents an examination of commercial transactions involving the sale of children in contemporary Ghana. It presents the results of a criminological analysis of 20 cases of commercial transactions in children in Ghana. It describes the sociodemographic characteristics of offenders and victims, victim–offender relationships, offender motivations, public reactions to the phenomenon, as well as the criminal justice system’s responses to the crime. The data were extracted from Ghanaian print and electronic presses. The data show that more boys than girls were sold and that the ages of the victims ranged from 1 month to 19 years, although younger, prepubescent children were more likely to be sold than adolescents and younger adults. The results further show that the relationship between the offender and the child victim was a primary one, with parent–child relationships being dominant, followed by uncle–nephew. Pecuniary reasons were the primary motive for the crime, with offenders invariably expressing the need for money to satisfy pressing financial needs or personal enrichment. The data show that offenders were subject to prompt arrest, prosecution, and incarceration. A summary is provided for each of the 20 cases analyzed in the study.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2391-2413
Number of pages23
JournalInternational Journal of Offender Therapy and Comparative Criminology
Volume62
Issue number8
DOIs
StatePublished - Jun 1 2018

Keywords

  • Ghana
  • child abuse
  • child neglect
  • child sale
  • human trafficking

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