Human Trafficking in Israel

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Human trafficking in Israel includes the trafficking of men and women into the country for forced labor and commercial sexual exploitation. Israel has only recently been raised from Tier 2 to Tier 1 for trafficking. "A Tier 1 ranking indicates that a government has acknowledged the existence of human trafficking, has made efforts to address the problem, and meets the TVPA’s minimum standards."[1] This change was made in a 2012 report.

Because prostitution is legal in Israel[2], human sex trafficking will likely continue for as long as prostitution is profitable.

Latest estimates place the number of individuals who regularly work as prostitutes in Israel at approximately 15,000, of which 98% are female. Many prostitutes serve multiple clients daily and statistics indicate that there are over 1,000,000 purchases of sexual services every month.

The sex industry in Israel reportedly generates 2.4 billion NIS every year, the vast majority of which fuels organized crime.[3]

In 2012, the Prime Minister of Israel claimed that human trafficking in the country has ended.[4] However, various reports have confirmed that Israel still has thousands of sex slaves, mostly from Eastern Europe. [5] [6] [7] [8] [9] [10] [11]

Multiple Israelis were caught in December 2018 selling "tourism packages" in Colombia to other Israelis which included prostitutes, some being minors.[12]



Genesis 12, 10-20:

Now there was a famine in the land, and Abram went down to Egypt to live there for a while because the famine was severe. As he was about to enter Egypt, he said to his wife Sarai, “I know what a beautiful woman you are. When the Egyptians see you, they will say, ‘This is his wife.’ Then they will kill me but will let you live. Say you are my sister, so that I will be treated well for your sake and my life will be well treated on your account.”

When Abram came to Egypt, the Egyptians saw that Sarai was a very beautiful woman. And when Pharaoh’s officials saw her, they praised her to Pharaoh, and she was taken into his palace. He treated Abram well for her sake, and Abram acquired sheep and cattle, male and female donkeys, male and female servants, and camels.

But the Lord inflicted serious diseases on Pharaoh and his household because of Abram’s wife Sarai. So Pharaoh summoned Abram. “Why have you dealt with me so treacherously? he said. “Why didn’t you tell me she was your wife? Why did you say, ‘She is my sister,’ so that I took her to be my wife? Now then, here is your wife. Take her and go!” Then Pharaoh gave orders about Abram to his men, and they sent him on his way, with his wife and everything he had.

David Digmi

Know as the biggest trafficker in Israeli history, David Digmi was a police informer and sex trafficker.

Despite Digmi being the senior figure in the network, the court put a gag order on publishing his name after he agreed to become a state’s witness and police informer. The agreement was unusual − 24 serious cases against Digmi were closed as part of the deal, including such alleged crimes as attempted rape, trafficking in women, pimping, extortion, drug possession and many more offenses committed over the course of more than a decade.

In return for closing the cases, Digmi agreed “not to commit any crime from the time of the signing [of the agreement] until the end of his trial, and not to commit any offense that would damage his credibility.” [13]

Most of Digmi's victims were white Europeans from Russia, Ukraine, Belarus, Moldavia and Uzbekistan.[14]

See Also


  2. Israel's fight against sex trafficking
  3. Human Trafficking in Israel
  4. PM: Illegal Immigration, Human Trafficking Things of the Past
  5. Thousands of slaves in Israel, global study finds
  6. How Israel's tourism industry enables prostitution and human trafficking. archived:
  7. Rabbi discusses human-trafficking trade in Israel.
  8. Sexual Trafficking in Israel.
  9. Police bust women-trafficking, prostitution ring in Tel Aviv.
  10. Human trafficker gets 7 years for forcing woman into prostitution.
  11. Perpetrators from Zaporizhia exported Ukrainian women into sexual slavery in Israel.
  12. Twelve Israelis Suspected of Running Child Sex Trafficking Network in Colombia.
  13. Biggest trafficker of women in Israeli history finally exposed (Haaretz)
  14. Biggest trafficker of women in Israeli history finally exposed