At least nine children have been rescued from suspected child traffickers who specialized in moving abducted children from the southern to northern parts of the country, police said on Friday.
The Enugu State Commissioner of Police, Ahmed Abdulrahman, disclosed this while parading two suspects who were arrested by soldiers on January 4 during their attempts to traffick the children in a luxury bus.
He said the rescued children comprised of four girls and five boys aged between two and 13 years.
Abdulrahman told journalists the suspects – Mrs. Rebecca Nwashi and Pastor Isaac David – were intercepted at Orba Check-point in Udenu local government area of the state by soldiers on “Operation Atilogwu Udo 1’’ exercise.
According to him, the army authorities handed over the children and suspects to the command for further investigation.
He said: “Apart from Mrs. Nwachi, we also have another suspect, Pastor Isaac David, who arranges the children being trafficked for Nwachi from Barkin Ladi council area in Plateau State.”
The police commissioner disclosed that police operatives are still on the trail of the end receiver of the trafficked children, one Blessing, who allegedly runs an orphanage home in Port Harcourt, River State.
He added: “This is a type of organised crime where children are trafficked from the Northern part of the country to the South-East and South-South.
“This syndicate runs their illegal business using orphanage as a cover-up. We have reached and contacted the parents of the trafficked children and some said that they gave their children to the pastor on condition that he will provide better welfare and education for them.
“Some other parents said that they did not know when their children moved out of their homes and they have declared them missing for some time now. While at the end receiver’s point, only God knows what these children are used for; some might be used as sacrificial lambs, child labour; and others subjected to a lot of criminal activities.”
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