Sex slavery in Indramayu, West Java and Jakarta.
Teenage girls in the villages of Java are sometimes sold by their parents to brokers who then take them to work in brothels in Jakarta or elsewhere such as Dolly in Surabaya, Saritem in Bandung, or one of the many other red light districts in the towns of the country.
In one village, Bongas, Indramayu, West Java, the going sale price of a pretty young girl is about 9 or 10 million rupiah (about $1000). One woman, Sanni, said she and her husband took their 15-year-old daughter out of school and sold her to work in a brothel in north Jakarta because the family needed the money.
We were in a very miserable situation. There is no work here. So we had no choice but to send her to Jakarta.
Sanni's daughter is kept locked up in the brothel most of the time but is allowed to return home once every two months to take money to her parents.
Another girl in the same brothel says she sometimes feels angry that her parents have done this to her but that she needs to help them because they are in a lot of debt. She is afraid to tell her parents that working as a prostitute makes her very sad.
It is said that people in Bongas began hawking their daughters around ten years ago when Indonesia was hit by an economic crisis. The poor farmers and labourers learnt that they could quickly make a lot of money from their children and some have done very well out of the deal. Prices for girls have gone up sharply in recent times, from 200 to 300 dollars a few years ago.
Sukim, a leader of an anti-trafficking organisation, says his group tries to prevent the girls from dropping out of school by giving free education in the village and by teaching girls skills like cooking so they can find better jobs.
Anti human trafficking efforts are hampered by the unconcern of leaders in society over the matter however. Sukara, the village chief of Bongas, says he warns parents whenever a girl is sold that it is not the right thing to do but he never reports the matter to the police.
The sex slavery trade in Bongas is starting to take a heavy toll, with five HIV-AIDS deaths in the village in the last few months. This is said to have caused some parents to hesitate over selling their daughters. Al Jazeera