58% of POGO-related crimes in PH involved human trafficking – Gatchalian

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Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, May 14) — Most of the crimes related to Philippine Offshore Gaming Operators (POGOs) involved human trafficking, Senator Win Gatchalian said Sunday.

Citing a letter sent by the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI), Gatchalian said 65 or 58% of the 113 POGO-related cases recorded from November 2019 to March 2023 were linked to human trafficking.

The NBI said aside from the 65 cases of human trafficking, 33 cases of international operations, seven cases of cybercrimes, four anti-organized and transnational crimes, three cases of fraud, and one case of violation of anti-violence against women and children were also related to POGO.

“This is concerning and alarming and can have serious implications on the country’s national security,” Gatchalian, chair of the Senate way and means committee, said in a statement.

“Human trafficking is a heinous crime that exploits the most vulnerable in our communities and the data from the NBI shows that some POGO operators are into human trafficking too. We cannot allow such horrific crimes to happen in our country,” he added.

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