• Tony Igele

Pastor, Sister in Police Net after Collecting $45,000 from Trafficked Victim

Court sentences mother of four for human trafficking

The Edo State Police Command has smashed a human trafficking syndicate led by Miss Vivian Ehiozee and her brother, Pastor Endurance Ehiozee, who specialised in trafficking young girls from Benin-city to Russia for prostitution.

Ehiozee who is based in Benin-city is alleged to use his Church where he is the deputy pastor as a fertile ground to lure young girls in search of greener pastures overseas into prostitution with the collaboration of his sister in Russia.

Their arrest was made possible after a tip-off by a state-based Non-Governmental Organisation (NGO), Initiative for Youths Awareness on Migration, Immigration Development and Re-integration (IYAMIDR), that deals with issues of illegal trafficking.

The arrest of the syndicate was made possible when one of the trafficked victims, Miss Florence Abu, 24, who was recently reunited with her family, reported the matter to IYAMIDR while seeking urgent assistance from good spirited individual and government.

Narrating her ordeal, Miss Abu lamented that she paid her ‘madam’ a whopping sum of $45,000, she did not only dump her in the streets of Russia, but that she is battling with a mysterious ailment.

Florence, a hair stylist and a dancer, said she was 18 years old when she was trafficked in 2013, narrating how she was lured into prostitution by her Pastor (Endurance) who facilitated the plans to traffic her.

She disclosed that she was molested by her madam throughout the period she was in Russia, and advised young girls against showing interest especially when they are offered to travel abroad in the name of better life, adding that most of the girls are languishing in Russia without hope.

Meanwhile, a Benin High Court presided over by Justice Alero Edodo-Eruaga, yesterday, sentenced one Mrs. Regina Osarieme, a mother of four, to 15 years imprisonment for human trafficking.

The suspect was arraigned on a three-count charge of export for prostitution, procurement for gratification and procurement for unlawful carnal knowledge in suit number B/7C/14.

These offences are contrary to the provisions of the Trafficking in Persons (Prohibition) Law Enforcement and Administration Act 2003 (as amended).

The trafficker was alleged to have recruited a 16-year-old girl, who is in SS 2 at Okha secondary school in Benin-city and promised to take her to Russia.

Before embarking on the journey, the victim was requested to pay a registration fee of #50,000 and two ‘Hollandis’ wrapper to the accused.

The accused who pleaded not guilty to the charges hails from Ewega village in Orhionmwon Local Government Area of state. She was said to have recruited the girl through an agent called Anthony.

According to a statement by the NAPTIP Zonal Commander, Nduka Nwanwene, “As soon as the victim was recruited, she was taken to a popular motor transporter in the city, where she boarded a vehicle to Lagos and from there to Cotonou and then Mali.

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