Wednesday, September 23, 2015

How NAPTIP uncovered human traffic syndicate

The National Agency for the Prohibition Trafficking in Persons (NAPTIP) has bust an human trafficking syndicate. napFive members of the gang were paraded in Lagos yesterday by NAPTIP officials. They are Homuere Terry Smooth, Priscilla Effiong Bassey, Precious Ejiro Owoh, Blessing Gabriel and Rose Gabriel. The agency said the syndicate specialised in luring young ladies into prostitution overseas. Two girls were lured into prostitution in Dubai, United Arab Emirate (UAE), it claimed. NAPTIP Head of Press and Public Relations Mr Josiah Emerole said the suspects were arrested in collaboration with local and international law enforcement agencies after videos, which showed the naked victims swearing to an oath, went viral on the social media. One of the victims, identified as Ann, was rescued by the agency and brought back home to re-unite with her family. Emerole said the other victim whose name was given as Chisom was out of the traffickers’ reach adding that efforts were on to track other members of the syndicate still at large. Ann was allegedly recruited into prostitution in Dubai by Precious, a Lagos-based make-up artist. Emerole said: “The process of preparing Ann for the Dubai trip was coordinated by Rose, an elder sister to the UAE-based Blessing. The suspects attempted to force the victim to a shrine for oath of secrecy. On arrival in Dubai, the oath of secrecy, which could not be administered in Nigeria, was forcefully administered on Ann and recorded. “The recording was later released on YouTube, a video-sharing website, after Ann escaped from her exploiters in Dubai, where she was forced into prostitution contrary to the initial promise of being given a job at a hairdressing saloon.” Terry, the agency said, rented a seven-bedroom duplex house in Lekki Phase 1 area of Lagos, where she harboured young girls for prostitution. Emerole said the girls paid N10,500 weekly to Terry as commission for fixing them up in sex work.” He added: “Terry used the building, where she paid N3.2 million yearly, to harbour all kinds of girls from within and outside Nigeria and charges them N10,500 each weekly. It was in the house that Chisom met Priscilla Bassey Effiong, who claimed to be a businesswoman. Priscilla recruited Chisom for a Dubai-based Ebony Fegor, who has been in trafficking business since 2011.” In an interview with reporters, the suspects gave contradictory accounts of their roles in the syndicate. But, Priscilla, an indigene of Calabar South Local Government Area of Cross River State, confessed to the crime. Terry, who hails from Bayelsa State, maintained that she helped the girls to get jobs in Dubai. Eromole said the suspects’ activities violated the Trafficking in Persons (Prohibition) Enforcement and Administration Act, 2015. He added: “The suspects would be arraigned in court soon, while efforts are being intensified at the diplomatic level to track all other members of this syndicate who are still in Dubai.”

No comments:

Post a Comment