Gambian Police Detain Sierra Leoneans in Connection to Suspected Sex Trafficking Case
The police in Gambia have detained seven Sierra Leoneans in connection to a suspected human trafficking case.
The suspects were arrested on Monday after they allegedly stormed a guesthouse where they suspected a group of Sierra Leonean women allegedly trafficked for sex where being lodged. The guesthouse is located in an area of the town of Brikama called Dirima Kolong.
Local media in Gambia reported heavy paramilitary presence at the Suba Police Station in Brikama, where the suspects were held on Monday.
According to the Brikama based online TV outlet, Membekering, which also owns the Home Digital FM radion station, the guesthouse belonged to a Yassin Bah. Bah, whose nationality wasn’t immediately clear, is alleged to have trafficked the girls with the intention of using them as sex workers.
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Spokeswoman of The Gambia Police Force (GPF), ASP Binta Njie-Jatta, confirmed the arrests of the Sierra Leoneans. She told ManoReporters that they allegedly attacked the guesthouse acting on information they got that among those trafficked was their 17-year old sister, whom they wanted to free.
The suspects, according to Mrs Jatta, face charges of criminal trespass and attempt to commit felony and willful damage to property.
According to the Police Spokeswoman, the suspected trafficker was also detained and is under investigation. She added that the case had been handed over to the Gender and Child Welfare Unit, the GPF’s equivalent of the Family Support Unit of the Sierra Leone Police.
Jatta went on to say that the Sierra Leone High commission in The Gambia and the agency responsible for the prohibition of trafficking in person would be informed and involved in the investigation.
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“The number of people involved is not yet confirmed as there are suspected contact persons in Sierra Leone who helped facilitate the process,” she said.