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Two arrested for human trafficking in Akwa Ibom

Two suspected human traffickers have been arrested by the Akwa Ibom State command of the National Agency for the Prohibition of Trafficking in Persons (NAPTIP).

The suspects identified as Okokon Essien Bassey and Ofonime Essien Bassey were arrested on Tuesday Fenbruary 18, after approaching one Emmanuel Monday and his pregnant wife to buy their unborn baby for N500,000.

The couple who were advised to play along by NAPTIP officials after filing a complaint, requested for N10,000 from the suspects as a form of commitment and a sign of seriousness. The pregnant lady and her two children were handed over to the suspects who subsequently embarked on a journey with them to Port Harcourt.

The pregnant woman and her two children were rescued after being trailed by operatives of the agency. A search has been intensified to arrest one of the suspects who escaped during the rescue mission.

A statement reads in parts;

“The Uyo Zonal Command of the National Agency for the Prohibition of Trafficking in Persons (NAPTIP) has apprehended two suspects for human trafficking in an early hour operation this morning, the two suspects, namely Okokon Essien Bassey, ‘M’, 33 years old and Ofonime Essien Bassey, ‘F’, 40 years old were apprehended.

"The suspects had on several occasions approached one Emmanuel Monday and his wife who is a mother of two kids and presently pregnant and requested for the purchase of the unborn baby for the sum of five hundred thousand naira (N500,000).

“On receiving the intelligence, NAPTIP operatives requested the victims to play along with the suspects.

“In the course of several meetings, the victims demanded the sum of N10,000 from the suspects to show their seriousness in what they were being asked to do. Upon the payment of the N10,000 to the victims the pregnant woman, along with their two kids were handed over to the suspects.”

 The arrested suspects have made useful statements and would soon be charged to court.

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