FIA arrests over 2-dozen Chinese for girls trafficking

The Nation

Official confirms for first time weapons were also recovered from Chinese nationals
ISLAMABAD – Amid continued crackdown on the rackets involved in brokering sham marriages of Chinese nationals with Pakistani girls for their trafficking to China, Federal Investigation Agency Wednesday arrested over two dozen Chinese for their alleged involvement in the illegal business.
FIA’s Anti-Human Trafficking Cell arrested another 14 Chinese nationals during raids in Islamabad and Rawalpindi on charges of trafficking Pakistani girls to China allegedly to force them into prostitution and for removal of body organs, an official of FIA said. FIA also recovered three Pakistani girls from their possession during these raids.
The official said that 12 Chinese nationals were arrested in a raid from Islamabad. He also confirmed that for the first time, weapons were recovered from Chinese nationals and efforts were underway to extract more information from the suspects about the other gangs operating in Pakistan and involved in trafficking of girls.
Some weeks earlier, China had shown serious concerns with Pakistan over marriages of some Chinese nationals with Pakistani girls and pointed out involvement of some marriage bureaus, operating in Pakistan, in this illegal matchmaking business.
Federal Interior for Minister retired Brig Ijaz Ahmad Shah, the other day, took notice of this sex and trafficking scandal issue and directed the officials concerned to engage ambassadors and government officials on the matter. Chinese Ambassador Yao Jing here on Wednesday called on the interior minister and according to some senior officials of the ministry, the issue also came under discussion.
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On the other hand, Chairman of the Senate Standing Committee on Interior Senator Rehman Malik has sought a detailed report from Ministry of Interior and FIA on the issue within the next three days. “The chairman has taken notice of media reports regarding the involvement of Chinese nationals in human trafficking and marrying Pakistani girls with the help of local agents and forcing them into prostitution,” the letter written by Malik to the ministry and FIA said.
On Tuesday, FIA in its intensified crackdown has arrested 20 suspects during raids in Lahore, Rawalpindi and Islamabad for their involvement in this human trafficking scandal. The agency’s Lahore office has arrested 10 Chinese nationals along with their three local accomplices during a raid.
The same day, FIA took into its custody three Chinese nationals and four locals during separate raids in Islamabad and Rawalpindi. Two Pakistani girls, Tayyaba Gul and N. Benish Rasheed had lodged a complaint with the Director General FIA Bashir Ahmad Memon and as a result of this, FIA Islamabad Zone had constituted a team to probe the scandal.
Prior to this, FIA during a raid had arrested 11 members of a Chinese racket in Lahore on charges of trapping Pakistani girls into fake marriages. The raid was conducted following reports that over 90 Pakistani women, many of them belonging to poor Christian families, have already been trafficked to China after sham marriages.
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Last week, the FIA had arrested two Chinese bridegrooms while contracting marriage in Faisalabad.
According to investigation of the agency, the Chinese rackets would target poor families in different cities of Punjab, especially Lahore. They offer cash and gifts to the bride’s family and also bear all expenses of the marriage only to trap them for prostitution, the FIA official said. Similarly, they also used to offer cash to the Pakistani facilitators. The investigation show that the Chinese nationals used to claim themselves as Muslim in a bid to win confidence of the bride’s family. In this connection, they have made fake conversion certificates.
The FIA official also said that a detailed report in connection with the arrests had been sent to the Ministry of Interior while the Chinese embassy in Islamabad was also informed in this connection.

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