What could be more relaxing than cruising down the Amazon on a boat, fishing rod in hand, bonding with other hunting, fishing, and sports enthusiasts? How about luring a 13-year-old girl onto that boat, giving her cocaine, and then having sex with her? A recent undercover investigation from ABC news has discovered that for some hunting and fishing tours, sex with children is part of the package deal.
At least three young Brazilian girls, 13 and 16, have come forward with allegations of abuse aboard hunting and fishing tour boats filled with American tourists. They were offered jobs cleaning the boats, but when they showed up for work, they were given string bikinis, cocaine, and the order to have sex with the tourists. They were also forced to pose nude for pornography. When the boat left the shore, the girls had nowhere to escape to. You may want to think the tours that abused these girls aren’t be arranged and promoted in the U.S., but they absolutely are.
Wearing hidden cameras, some undercover reporters from ABC News recently entered a convention sponsored by the Dallas Safari Club, which brought together hunting and fishing-themed tour operators from all over the world. The operators were promising what you would expect from such tours — beautiful scenery, luxury accommodations, adventure — but also had some unexpected offerings. Several tour operators promised fantastic parties with beautiful women. But how young can we get those women? the undercover reporters asked. Apparently, pretty young.
According to one operator, “I mean, it’s a third world country and you can do whatever you want. You know if you want to do a party it’s not like here — you can’t touch, you can’t look — you can do whatever the f**k you want [there].”
Another operator told the reporters that he would “make it happen,” when they asked about procuring underage girls for the trip. He said there was an unspoken code on these sorts of tours that no one messes with. The code, apparently, of exploitation.
The Dallas Safari Club issued a statement back in January (when they first learned that some of the tour operators at their convention had been caught promoting child sex tourism) that they will “aggressively enforce a zero-tolerance policy” against operators who are including sex with young girls as part of any package. Those people aren’t welcome at the Dallas Safari Club. But there are dozens of other organizations which promote and provide these sorts of tours, aimed at men taking a break from the stresses of home and family for a week or two of hunting and fishing. And in several cases, having sex with kids.
Photo credit: Adam Jones PhD