Tuesday, October 20, 2015 1:07 am
A suspected child trafficking syndicate operating across the states of the South-South and South-East geo-political zones has been nabbed by the Delta State Police Command.
Six children aged between one and five years were rescued from the syndicate led by one Mrs. Asouza and her husband who were said to have been operating within the states for some time now.
Four of the trafficked children were rescued at Onitsha in Anambra State while the other two were rescued at Uyo in Akwa-Ibom State where two pregnant teenage girls were also freed from the grips of the suspects.
The lid was however blown open when operatives of the Delta State Police Command uncovered the syndicate’s cell in Asaba and subsequently arrested Mrs. Asouza and her husband.
The discovery was made known to journalists in Asaba, the State capital on Monday by the State Police Commissioner, Alkali Baba Usman. He disclosed that the prime suspect led operatives of the State Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS) to Onitsha “where one Mary Bassey Okon was arrested and four trafficked children aged 1 – 5 years were recovered.”
According to him, the suspects led the police team to Akwa-Ibom State where “one Ekeate Sunday (f), Etieno Mary Bassey (f), Stella John (f) and Esther Ezekiel were arrested and two additional trafficked children of same age bracket were recovered.”
The two pregnant teenage girls, Nancy Atume and Chidima who were allegedly handed over to the suspects for nursing with a view to selling the babies after delivery were recovered from the suspects.
Usman said while Chidima Johnson and the six children were handed over to the Delta State Ministry of Women Affairs, Nancy Atume was handed over to her parents, just as he advised parents whose children were missing to report at the state police command.
Mr. Usman advised “parents especially those from Akwa-Ibom and Cross River states whose children were stolen or are missing to report to Delta State Police Command to check if any of their children are among the recovered children.
“It also becomes necessary to warn parents to ensure proper custody of their children in and out of school,” he said, adding that the suspects would soon be arraigned.