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DOJ indicts 2 women allegedly offering girls for prostitution

Two women who were allegedly offering minors for sexual services have been charged with no bail recommended by a Department of Justice (DOJ) task force before a Biñan court in Laguna.

The suspects now face five counts of qualified trafficking in violation of Republic Act No. 9208 or the Anti-Trafficking in Persons Act of 2003, as amended by R.A. No. 10364, in relation to R.A. No.10175.

The DOJ’s task force on women and children against trafficking in persons (TFWCATIP) filed the charges before the Regional Trial Court of Biñan City, following a complaint filed by the National Bureau of Investigation - Human Trafficking Division (NBI-HTRAD) against the two. 

In April 2024, the DOJ said that a confidential informant tipped off The Exodus Road, a non-government organization that fights human trafficking, regarding the alleged crime committed by one of the suspects through the use of social media. 

An Exodus employee then met with the suspects the next month to confirm the information. Upon validation, it was reported to the NBI-HTRAD for appropriate action. 

The DOJ said an entrapment operation was set up at a resort in Biñan, in coordination with the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD).

The two suspects arrived at the supposed stag party staged by operatives along with seven girls. There it was established that the girls were available for sexual service for a fee of P4,500 each.

The girls would supposedly earn P2,000 after deducting the commissions of the two suspects and another minor who was an accomplice. 

The two suspects were immediately placed under warrantless arrest, and the rescued victims were taken to the NBI main office for processing. As to the minor who allegedly brought additional girls to the resort, a further investigation was recommended to determine her culpability, as an accessory to the crime.

Justice Secretary Jesus Crispin Remulla commended the TFWCATIP for the “swift resolution” of the case. 

“May this serve as a warning to human traffickers who continuously oppress the weak, especially minors for their self-interest,” Remulla said in a statement.

He also advised victims not to be afraid to report related incidents to anti-trafficking authorities and law enforcers. — Giselle Ombay/BM, GMA Integrated News