Cops, agents, rescued 14 year old girl
By: Denn Reed B. Tuvera Jr.
The 100 strong combined forces of the National Bureau of Investigation Anti-Human Trafficking Division (NBI-AHTRAD) and the Philippine National Police (PNP) rescued a 14 year old girl in Quezon City last April 2.
The young girl was abducted by a woman, in the late 20’s, who was recruiting minors for child prostitution. The NBI-AHTRAD planned an entrapment operation after the mother of the child received a text message from the suspect asking for a ransom in exchange for the freedom of the child.
The incident happened last March 27 when the mother of the victim reported to the police that her daughter was kidnapped. The report arrived at the office of the Department of Justice (DOJ) Secretary Leila De Lima. She immediately formed a team composed of the DOJ – Inter-Agency Council Against Human Trafficking (DOJ-IACAT) led by Asst. City Prosecutor Raymond Jonathan Lledo and NBI-AHTRAD under Atty. Dante Bonoan. This incident is the largest manhunt in history of Human Trafficking in the Philippines.
The PNP led by Police Sr. Superintendent Jimmy Rivera and the NBI personnels led by Atty. Pedro Roque conducted a massive search in Cauayan, Isabella. The search-attempt however failed to find the missing child. Then, information came to the NBI that the child was last seen in lower Bicutan, Taguig, Metro Manila.
With the help of the National Capital Region Police Office headed by Police Chief Superintendent Nicanor Bartolome, they searched the area and placed police checkpoints. With all the efforts, the forces of justice still failed to find the girl until the mother received a text message from the suspect asking for ransom money in exchange for the girl.
With the help of PACER’s technical equipment, they were able to trace the signal in an area in Tandang Sora, Quezon City. The NBI-AHTRAD immediately planned an entrapment operation. The place of the entrapment was set at the Trinoman Mall in Quezon City.
In the evening of the same day, the mother and suspect met at the Trinoma Mall for the payment of the ransom. Assured that the child was in the hands of the suspects, the forces of justice immediately arrested the suspect who turned out to be a woman in the late 20’s. The suspect led them to the place in Tandang Sora where the child is. At the same time, the NBI arrested the husband of the suspect who was acting as a look-out.
DOJ-IACAT head ACP Raymond Jonathan Lledo said “the operation was a success because of the direct involvement of the DOJ secretary, who was monitoring the operation on a 24 – hour basis.
“The strong coordination with the police agencies monitored by DILG Secretary Jesse Robredo, also played a vital role in the recovery of the child,” Lledo added. The suspects were recommended for inquest on April 4.
The suspects were charged with violation of Republic Act 9208 or the “Anti-Trafficking in Persons Act of 2003 specifically, for Qualified Trafficking under Sec. 6, thereof,” as the victim was a minor; and violation of RA 7610 or the “Anti-Child Abuse, Exploitation or Discrimination Act.”