Zambo police rescue 10 human trafficking victims, arrest illegal recruiter

ZAMBOANGA CITY (MindaNews/13 November) – The Women and Children Protection Desk (WCPD) of the local police rescued on Monday 10 human trafficking victims and arrested a suspected illegal recruiter in this city.

Police said the victims were rescued in a rented house in Barangay Baliwasan where the suspected illegal recruiter, whose identity was withheld, was arrested by the WCPD operatives.

The victims told police they were hired to work in an oil palm plantation in Sabah, Malaysia.

The victims, who are from Zamboanga, Davao and Pagadian cities, were turned over to the custody of the Visayan Forum Foundation (VFF).

VFF is a nongovernment organization established in 1991 that works on issues of domestic work, child labor and human trafficking especially of women and children

Two of the victims are females and eight are males, and the youngest among them is a 16-year-old girl, police said. They were rescued after the house owner reported their presence to the police.

Police said the victims were already scheduled to board a wooden-hulled ferry on Monday evening from this city to Taganak, Turtle Islands town in Tawi-Tawi.

From Taganak, the victims would have boarded another wooden-hulled ferry that would take them to Sandakan in Sabah. (MindaNews)