Security Operatives Raid Brothels In Port Harcourt, Rescue 50 Underaged Girls

The Nigerian Navy has claimed that during a significant operation on two brothels in Port Harcourt, Rivers State, it was able to free 50 underage prostitutes and capture three alleged sex traffickers.

This was revealed on Sunday, October 30, when Lieutenant Commander Richard Iginla, Base Information Officer, Nigerian Navy Ship (NNS) Pathfinder, paraded the culprits and rescued victims in Port Harcourt.

The Nigeria Agency for the Prohibition of Trafficking in Persons, NAPTIP, and the Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps, NSCDC, according to Mr. Iginla, assisted on the operation.

He said that the 50 prostitutes, mostly adolescent females, were found and saved in the early hours of Saturday on a tip from NAPTIP.

“We got the intelligence from NAPTIP, who had been tracking the brothels that camped juveniles with some of them as young as 14 years of age,” he said.

“So, after NAPTIP shared intelligence with us, a joint team was set up and we immediately went into action to rescue the victims.

“No fewer than 50 young girls forced into prostitution were rescued while three recruiters and operators of the brothels were arrested,” he added.

According to Mr. Iginla, the brothels Royal Brothel and Cool Breeze Brothel, both of which were situated on Azikiwe Road in the Diobu neighborhood of Port Harcourt, had been closed.

He claimed that efforts were being made to track down and apprehend the ringleaders of the sex trafficking organization that uses rural kids as prostitution models.

“Children are gifts from God, and we must do everything humanly possible to protect them from all forms of abuse and exploitation. The Nigeria Navy will continue to collaborate with relevant agencies to bring to justice criminal elements that traffic persons either on land or through the waterways.

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“On conclusion of our investigation, the suspects and victims will be handed over to NAPTIP for further investigation and possible prosecution,” he added.

Nwa-amaka Ikediashi, the director of NAPTIP in Rivers, declared that the organization would begin immediate rehabilitation of the victims with a focus on reintegrating them back into society.

She claimed that the victims, who were primarily young girls, would also go through various stages of counseling to make sure they didn’t continue working as prostitutes.

“NAPTIP, as the focal agency mandated to fight all forms of human trafficking and sexual exploitation, will conduct proper investigation, to ensure justice is served,” she promised.

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