PP RUEHCD RUEHGD RUEHHO RUEHNG RUEHNL RUEHRD RUEHRS RUEHTM
DE RUEHMC #0289/01 2101958
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
P 291958Z JUL 09
FM AMCONSUL MONTERREY
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC PRIORITY 3855
INFO RUEHME/AMEMBASSY MEXICO PRIORITY 4927
RUEHXC/ALL US CONSULATES IN MEXICO COLLECTIVE
RUEFHLC/DEPT OF HOMELAND SECURITY WASHINGTON DC
RHMFIUU/DEPT OF JUSTICE WASHINGTON DC
RHMFIUU/FBI WASHINGTON DC
RUEHMC/AMCONSUL MONTERREY 9450 UNCLAS SECTION 01 OF 02 MONTERREY 000289
E.O. 12958: N/A
SUBJECT: MONTERREY'S GROWING PROSTITUTION PROBLEM
MONTERREY 00000289 001.2 OF 002
1. (SBU) Summary: A researcher at the Autonomous University of
Nuevo Leon states that there is a growing prostitution industry
in Monterrey, which has transformed the city into a major sex
tourism destination in Mexico. Traffickers lure women by
promising legitimate employment and then violently coerce them
into prostitution, cycling them between Mexican and U.S. cities.
Around the time they are 25, the sex workers are forced out,
often infected with HIV/AIDS, and become social outcasts. End
2. (SBU) On July 22, Arun Kumar Acharya, a professor at the
Institute of Social Investigation, Autonomous University of
Nuevo Leon, told PolOffs that Mexico's declining economy had
fueled a growing sex tourism industry in Monterrey and other
Mexican cities. According to him, traffickers lure impoverished
women to the city with promises of high salaries and respectable
employment, but then use harsh mental and physical coercion to
force them into prostitution. Most prostitutes that he
interviewed in the city originated from southern Mexican states.
Monterrey Becomes Sex Tourism Destination
3. (SBU) Monterrey gained international recognition as a result
of the 2007 World Cultural Forum, Kumar explained, and the
industry has gained momentum since then. He noted that the city
has now joined Tijuana, Mexico City, Acapulco, Cancun, and
Ciudad Juarez as a primary sex tourism destination.
4. (SBU) According to Kumar's research, Monterrey is both a
destination and transit point for sex workers. Prostitutes are
cycled throughout Mexican and U.S. cities. Most of the
prostitutes entering from northern Mexico don't use visas to
enter the U.S., but are smuggled across the border, he found.
Interestingly, he said some female students from the elite
Monterrey Institute of Technology told him they occasionally
perform sex for money in U.S. cities.
Workers Start Young, Finish Young
5. (SBU) Kumar said traffickers often enlist women as young as
nine. Around age 25, the prostitutes are considered too old and
are eventually forced out of the business by the traffickers.
By that time, they are usually infected with a sexually
transmitted disease, commonly HIV/AIDS, and are outcasts in
Mexico's conservative society due to their previous vocation.
6. (SBU) Younger sex workers can earn up to around US$ 38 per
act. Older prostitutes, seen as less desirable, charge as low
as US$ 11. In order to increase revenues, traffickers often
force prostitutes to engage in high risk behavior, such as
unprotected sex, or submit to violent acts, for which they
charge a premium.
Societal Fix Needed
7. (SBU) Kumar opined that new legislation is not the answer to
the problem. Indeed, Mexico already has anti-prostitution
legislation and is a signatory to international human rights
conventions. Instead, Kumar said that the problem could only be
resolved by strengthening social institutions to provide better
economic and educational opportunities along with improved
health care to impoverished communities.
MONTERREY 00000289 002.2 OF 002
8. (SBU) Kumar, a native of Orissa, India who has been in
Mexico since 2002, painted an increasingly dire picture of sex
trafficking in Monterrey and northern Mexico. His articles on
the sex trade have appeared in numerous publications, including
a recently released book "A New Form of Human Slavery - The
Trafficking of Women in Mexico," that he authored. Kumar noted
that he is seeking funding for additional sex trade study of the
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