NBI nabs 4 Chinese human traffickers, rescues 34 Chinese women

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The National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) on Tuesday rescued 34 other Chinese women allegedly set up for prostitution in Lapu-Lapu City, Cebu.

Lapu-Lapu City (CNN Philippines, August 6) — The National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) in Central Visayas arrested four Chinese nationals and rescued 34 other Chinese women they allegedly set up for prostitution in Lapu-Lapu City, Cebu.

The four Chinese nationals supposedly peddled their fellow Chinese inside a bar, said NBI-7 director Tomas Enrile. The suspects will face trafficking charges.

Enrile said the victims, mostly 20 to 30 years old, have active tourist visas. They are supposedly stay-in workers of the bar.

"They were recruited in China to work in a legal gaming operation here," said Enrile, adding they arrived on different dates in groups.

Enrile said they have coordinated with the city government to find the bar owner and determine if the establishment has business permits.

The victims will be released to Chinese consular officers in Cebu. NBI Assistant Regional Director Dominador Cimafranca said no charges will be filed against the victims.

"Sa mga review ng kaso namin, kumbaga ang Cebu malaki ang market dito sa prostitution unlike in other regions. Mas mabenta dito kasi maraming turista dito," Enrile said.

[Translation: Upon review of cases, Cebu has a large prostitution market unlike in other regions. Prostitution rakes in more money here since there are plenty of tourists here.]

Shalimar Tamano, Tourism Central Visayas director, said in a separate interview they will also conduct an investigation.