Task force rescues 2 trafficking victims, arrests 2 suspects

ZAMBOANGA CITY (MindaNews/12 August) – Law enforcers rescued two human trafficking victims and arrested two suspects at this city’s port, a police official disclosed Friday.

Senior Insp. Gemma Luna, chief of the Women and Children Protection Desk said that Melania Acto and Valentina Galapon, both from Aurora town in Isabela, were rescued around 6 a.m. Thursday.

Arrested were Romel Paraiso and Rachel Lopez, both residents of this city, Luna said.

She said the victims were rescued by members of the Sea Based Anti-Human Trafficking Task Force who learned of their presence at the local wharf.

She said the victims were placed under the custody of the Department of Social Welfare and Development while the suspects were turned over to the Criminal Investigation and Detection Group for the filing of appropriate charges against them.

Meanwhile, Luna said they have released a couple implicated in the illegal recruitment of 16 people from Misamis Occidental.

Released were Rodolfo Pasaylo and his wife, Gloria, who were detained and placed under investigation by the local police last Monday after a raid on their residence where 16 other persons were found.

Luna said that the Pasaylo couple was released because the supposed victims refused to testify against them.

“Hence, after the prescribed period of detention [without charges], the suspects were released in good physical condition,” she added.

The supposed victims were all from Barangay Bitibut, Sapang Dalaga, Misamis Occidental. (MindaNews)