The kingpin behind the Vietnamese sex trafficking syndicate in Takoradi has been busted at Tema. The arrest was during an undercover operation between our investigative reporter (Anas Aremeyaw Anas) and the Anti Human Trafficking Unit of the Ghana Police Service.
Lots of drama went on during the arrest of the kingpin at their secret hideout at Tema Community 9. This comes after weeks of surveillance by our reporter who had information that the kingpin lived in the storey building where he camped in innocent girls who had been shipped from Asia under false pretence.
When the team got to the place, the gates of the house was locked from the inside, several knocks on the gates yielded no response, subsequently; the Police broke into the house.
When the team got inside the building, a search was mounted for the kingpin who had pushed one victim downstairs to divert attention and aid her to easily escape. She jumped from the top floor of the building onto a roof top of another house, which broke instantly.
She was lucky that there was a concrete slab under the roof which supported her, she could have died or sustained serious injuries, the impact of her crash on the roof, brought the attention of neighbors from surrounding houses.
They started shouting and beckoning the Police to look at the incident on the roof top. The Police then moved onto the rooftop and carried her from there downstairs. She sustained an injury on her leg after that episode.
After her arrest, our reporter took the police investigators to the exact room where the traffickers stayed and pointed out which rooms they used for their sexual exploitation business.
The kingpin and her husband are said to be the masterminds of the trafficking ring. Their modus operandi was to bring the girls usually from Asia and to distribute them across the West African sub region. At the time of the arrest, there was a victim (name withheld) with them. The trafficker looked shocked at the incident and wondered how their operations leaked.
The Evidence in the Kingpin House
The team found lots of evidence of other trafficked girls, their passports, yellow fever inoculation cards (yellow cards), condoms, contraceptive pills, a dormitory for the girls and many more.
At the back of the house, we found a signboard that described the house as a wellness and fitness center. There were also complimentary cards meant to be given to visitors and many other pieces of evidence.
The victim, said to be a Chinese remained very calm throughout the raid. Whiles the trafficker remained jittery. She was always trying to make calls to her husband but was denied the opportunity till she was taken to the Police Headquarters. At the police headquarters, the victim was separated from the trafficker.
Reaction of the Vietnamese Girls to the Arrest of Kingpin
The Vietnamese girls who are in secret hiding were shocked and baffled at news about the arrest of the kingpin. They confirmed that she was the one who brought them to Ghana.
They also confirmed that they lived and worked for her and were sexually exploited over a period of time before she finally passed them on to Takoradi (Jang Mi Restaurant) where the exploitation continued.
Asked whether they were willing to go home, they said they could not wait to be repatriated. The International Organization on Migration (IOM) is in the process of buying them tickets to return to Vietnam.
This paper has so far done four stories in respect of this sex trafficking exposé dubbed ‘Trafficked and Abused,’ We started with the undercover story of how the girls were being trafficked and the operation that six girls being rescued and two traffickers arrested; we delved into the money trail of the traffickers with an analysis if financial transactions we found during the raid.
The third pieced told the harrowing details of conditions under which the girls lived amidst threats to their lives. Our latest component of the story touched on issues of prosecution of the traffickers published in yesterday’s edition of this paper under the headline; ‘Traffickers for Court.
Stay tuned as we dive deeper.
Source: Crusading Guide