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Table 1 Myths and facts about trafficking and sex work in the context of sports mega-events (adapted from [19])

From: ‘There are a lot of new people in town: but they are here for soccer, not for business’ a qualitative inquiry into the impact of the 2010 soccer world cup on sex work in South Africa

Event Place Predictions What did research show?
2012 Summer Olympics London, United Kingdom Increase in sex work as well as trafficking of men, women, and children for sex trafficking, forced labor, or both[22, 23] No increase in trafficking - London Met police investigated one case of human trafficking for sexual exploitation[24]
Majority of female sex workers surveyed say they had fewer customers during the Olympics, and only 7% came to London to seek clients attracted by the Olympics[25]
2010 FIFA World Cup South Africa 40 000 – 100 000 foreign sex workers or women/children would be trafficked into South Africa and increase in sex work[26, 27] No increase in the supply or demand of sex work during the World Cup[28, 29]
No increase in trafficking – the Department of Justice & Constitutional Development did not find one case of trafficking during the World Cup[30]
2010 Winter Olympics Vancouver, Canada Expected increase in trafficking for Olympic Games[31] No significantly increased odds in reports of new, youth or trafficked sex workers (zero reports) in the Olympic period[32]
2006 FIFA World Cup Germany 40 000 sex workers/women will be trafficked into Germany for the World Cup[33, 34]. No increase in trafficking related to the World Cup[35, 36]
Evidence of 5 cases of trafficking related to the World Cup[37]
Some sex workers and brothel-owners express disappointment with lack of clientele[38]
2004 Summer Olympics Athens, Greece Increase in trafficking of women and children for Olympics[39] Inconclusive, as no report produced on trafficking and Olympics[35, 40]
An International Organisation for Migration database shows that the organisation assisted 7 victims of trafficking in Athens, but no evidence of links to the Olympics[35]