Case Law Database

Trafficking in persons


• Trafficking in children (under 18 years)

Acts Involved

• Receipt
• Buying/Purchasing/Selling

Means Used

• Abuse of power or a position of vulnerability
• Giving or receiving payments or benefits to achieve the consent of a person having control over another person

Exploitative Purposes

• Exploitation of the prostitution of others or other forms of sexual exploitation


• Commercial sexual exploitation
• Internal trafficking

The State of Israel v. Teddy Ness

Fact Summary

The defendant is an Israeli citizen who met the complainants, the mother and her 10 years old daughter who lived in Georgia, through the internet. The defendant persisted in an on-line relations with the mother, as well as later upon his arrival to Georgia, where he met her and the daughter, bought the child gifts, went out with them and wired money for them from Israel. Later, according to the indictment, the defendant arrived to a hotel in Tbilisi and asked the mother and daughter to join him. The defendant and the mother reached an agreement according to which he will pay her a monthly payments of 100$ and in exchange she will allow him to use her daughter's body for the production of pornographic material and conducting sexual acts.
According to this agreement, in two cases, the defendant arrived to the hotel in Tbilisi and the mother brought the daughter there. In the hotel room, the defendant took obscene photos of the minor and sexually assaulted her, including partial penetration while visually recording the acts by several cameras belonging to him and the mother.
The defendant gave the mother a camera and a laptop so she can produce pedophile photos of the minor at his will. The mother emailed the photos to the defendant and he paid her. Later on, the defendant published and sold the photos and films. Additionally, the defendant held in his possession many other obscene materials of other minors, which he also published.
Sentence Date:


Abuse of power or a position of vulnerability
Giving or receiving payments or benefits to achieve the consent of a person having control over another person
Purpose of Exploitation:
Exploitation of the prostitution of others or other forms of sexual exploitation
Form of Trafficking:
Sector in which exploitation takes place:
Commercial sexual exploitation
International Cooperation:
Mutual legal assistance

Cross-Cutting Issues


... for

• completed offence

... based on

• criminal intention

International Cooperation

Involved Countries



• Mutual legal assistance


The submission of the indictment was in corporation with the Georgian authorities. The Georgian authorities arrested the mother and indicted her in TIP. The evidence in the case against the defendant is based on materials that were collected in Israel as well as in Georgia. Both the mother and the daughter were investigated and gave written statements. The indictment was submitted in Israel with the approval of the Deputy State Attorney (Criminal Matters) since some of the offenses, for example the sex offenses, are considered foreign offenses conducted in Georgia.

Procedural Information

Legal System:
Common Law
Latest Court Ruling:
Court of 1st Instance
Type of Proceeding:
Court of 1st instance:
Tel Aviv-Jaffa District Court
Date of Decision:
25 February 2015

Victims / Plaintiffs in the first instance

Anonymous girl

Defendants / Respondents in the first instance

Number of other accused:
Legal Reasoning:
The Court ruled that according to the strong evidence in this case, it was proven that the minor was passed from hand to hand: from her mother to the defendant as if she was an object, and therefore the element of "a transaction in a person", as required by the offense of trafficking in persons according to Israeli law, was met. The daughter was objectified. According to the Court, the objectification, and making a use of a person, need not to be permanent and does not even require a long period of time but rather can occur for a short period of time.
Also, the transaction in a person, and the objectification of a person, do not need to involve the displacement of the victim from its place of residence, as long as they are done for one of the purposes mentioned in the offense, in this case "causing him/her to participate in an obscene publication or in an obscene performance and or subjecting him/her to a sex offense".
Additionally, the Court decided that the linkage between the money transferred to the mother by the defendant and the "usage" of the minor was proven beyond reasonable doubt, even though this is not an element of the offense that needed to be proven.
As for the consent, which is not an element of the crime as well, it was proven from the evidence that the minor protested several times, which only reinforce the element of objectification of her body by her mother and the defendant.
Finally, the Court accepted the State Attorney's Office' argument, according to which the crime of trafficking in persons involves a wide range of situations that are not necessarily contingent upon a place, consent nor a compensation, and that clearly the circumstances of the case shows that a transaction was made between the mother of the victim and the defendant, a transaction whose purpose was to make use of the minor's body as an object, both for the defendant's sexual desires and for trading in the minor's photos.

Charges / Claims / Decisions

Charge details:
Trafficking in persons (multiple charges)
Charge details:
Rape, Indecent Act (multiple charges), Publishing an Obscene Publication that includes the Likeness of a Minor (multiple charges), Utilizing the Body of a Minor in order to Advertise an Obscenity (multiple charges), Possession of an Obscene Publication that includes the Likeness of a Minor (multiple charges)
On January 15, 2015 the Tel Aviv-Jaffa District Court convicted the defendant in all charges, including in multiple offenses of TIP.
Term of Imprisonment:
16 years
The defendant was sentenced to sixteen years imprisonment, twelve months conditional imprisonment for three years.

Compensation / Payment to Victim:
Yes  100000  NIS  (10,000-50,000 USD)
An appeal on the sentencing was filed by the State Attorney's office


Tel Aviv-Jaffa District Court