- Eleven female victims of human sex trafficking were rescued from a condominium in Pasay City
- According to the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI), they were promised to work as models but ended up as sex workers
- The rescue operation was made with the help of one victim who escaped in April
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Agents from the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) have rescued 11 females who were victims of human sex trafficking.
A condominium unit in Pasay City was barged in where the young women were secluded. What was supposed to be the start of a promised modeling career to them, ended up to be just a trap?
One victim who managed to escape in April complained to the NBI. She said she was told she would be working as a model. But that is not what happened. She was forced into a sex work and was retained in a condo unit in Makati City.
Officials from the NBI and the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) made the rescue operations when they finally located the hideout.
Eleven young women, nine of which are minors, were taken into custody while the alleged mastermind, identified as Nehemiah Velasquez, was arrested.
On the other hand, Velasquez denied allegations.
"Hindi ko po alam eh. Magkakaibigan po sila eh. Nakikituloy lang po sila kapag may time sila," he answered when asked why the women were in his condo unit.
(I don’t know. They are all friends. They just stay here if they have the time.)
Ana Reyes, NBI agent who handles the case, said trafficking syndicates are recruiting victims from the provinces with the use of social media.
"Sila ay ni-recruit mula sa iba't ibang probinsya, na ang pagkaka-entice sa kanila sila po ay magmo-model lamamg. Sila po ay inilalako sa iba-ibang customer, mostly foreigners on Casinos,” Reyes said.
(They were recruited from different provinces, they were enticed to work as a model only. They were sold to several customers, mostly foreigners on Casinos.)
According to the NBI, syndicates use minors to cover up their “operations” and make it appear like an escort service instead. Each female victim costs 15,000 to 30,000 pesos depending on their age and physical appearance. Victims were then delivered to hotels for foreign customers who usually play in Casinos.
Four persons of interest – Hillary Santos Acosta alias "Violet Sy," Adrian Rivares Carido, Orlando Baloloy Abarca and Alex Campita Balane were also arrested from the scene.
The five suspects violated the “Anti-Trafficking in Persons Act of 2003.” They will be charged with child abuse and qualified human trafficking of minors. Both are non-bailable. - Kami Media
Video from 24 Oras, GMA Network