KUCHING, Oct 25: Police rescued five foreign women aged 24 to 29 believed to be victims of human trafficking for sexual exploitation during a raid at a commercial premises along Jalan Setia Raja on Friday (Oct 21).
In a statement today, Sarawak Police Commissioner Datuk Mohd Azman Ahmad Sapri said the raid was carried out by Sarawak Police Contingent Headquarters (IPK) Criminal Investigation Department D7 Branch at 3.30 pm.
“When we arrived at the location, police found that the premises where the victims were living in was locked from the outside, and their movements were monitored by a closed circuit television (CCTV),” he said.
Mohd Azman said the police then took several initiatives to rescue the victims.
He also said after further investigation, the police then made follow-up arrests of two local men aged 23 and 25 in separate locations to assist in the investigation.
“Police also seized two foreign passports believed to belong to the victims,” he added.
Mohd Azman said the arrest and seizure were made in accordance with Section 12 of the Anti-Trafficking in Persons and Anti-Smuggling of Migrants (Atipsom) Act 2007.
“If convicted, they can be punished with imprisonment of not more than 15 years and fined.
“The case was also investigated in accordance with Section 12(1)(F) of the Passport Act 1966, and can be fined RM10,000 and sentenced to imprisonment not exceeding five years if found guilty,” he said.
According to Mohd Azman, the initial investigation found that all the victims who were brought into Sarawak were forced to ‘entertain’ customers at entertainment premises and hotels, including performing sexual activities for a certain fee.
He said all of the victims claimed to have been in Sarawak between three weeks and five months. — DayakDaily