The National Agency for the Prohibition of Trafficking in Persons, NAPTIP has arrested six persons including a 25-year-old Abu Dhabi-based lady for alleged trafficking of girls from Nigeria to the United Arab Emirates to engage in forced prostitution.
Rita Ani, who hails from Enugu State, allegedly belongs to a network of Nigerian traffickers based in Abu Dhabi who engage Nigerian girls in international prostitution in UAE, the agency said in a statement on Wednesday.
The other suspects include Ngozi Ani (also known as Princess, 31, and Rita’s elder sister); Ozigi Abdulkarim, 32, from Kogi State; Princewill James, 34, from Bayelsa State; Benson Emmanuel, 32, from Rivers State; and Philip Joshua, 32, (also known as OJ) from Bayelsa State.
“The suspects were arrested by operatives of NAPTIP in two operations in Gwarimpa, Abuja, and Ibadan, the Oyo State capital,” Josiah Emerole, NAPTIP’s spokesperson said in the statement.
“Rita, who recently returned home to perform her traditional marriage rites preparatory to moving to the United Kingdom with her fiancé, was arrested in Ibadan by the newly established NAPTIP- Rapid Response Squad, NAPTIP-RRS.
“The lid of these suspects was blown recently when one of the victims returned from Abu Dhabi after 4 months of forced prostitution by Rita and under very excruciating conditions which included flogging and the insertion of hot boiling ring into her vagina when she did not make enough money a day and forceful collection of the proceeds of the prostitution from her by Rita.”
The 19-year old victim (name withheld) was allegedly recruited at Gwarimpa, Abuja, by her ex-boyfriend, Mr. Abdulkarim, and the duo of Ms. Ngozi and Mr. James for onward transfer to Ms. Ani in UAE.
They reportedly prepared her travel documents, took her to Ogbomoso, Oyo State, where a fetish oath was administered to her before her trip, NAPTIP said.
Messrs. Abdulkareem and Joshua are associates of the gang who played one role or the other in the movement of the victim, the agency added.
“While investigations are going on, the suspects have made very useful statements concerning the case,” the statement said.
“Rita also confessed to having more girls working for her in the UAE,” it added.
The agency said the suspects would be charged to court soon.
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