Punjab couple arrested for 'sex trafficking girls to Saudi Arabia'

Suspects belong to a six-member gang, FIA officials say

News Desk December 08, 2017
Suspects allegedly deceived a family in sending their two young girls to Saudi Arabia. PHOTO: FILE

The Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) has claimed to have arrested a married couple, alleged members of a human trafficking gang that sends girls from Punjab to Saudi Arabia to work as sex workers.

Suspects Hasan Imtiaz and his wife Sameena were arrested in Toba Tek Singh on Friday for allegedly deceiving a family in sending their two young girls to the Kingdom as employees, Express News reported on Friday.

The girls, however, were sold in Pakistan and later illegally trafficked to Saudi Arabia to work as prostitutes.

According to FIA officials, the suspects belonged to a six-member gang and raids were being carried out to nab the remaining associates of the sex trafficking ring.

Pakistan is considered one of those countries that do not fully comply with the Trafficking Victims Protection Act, where the numbers of people trafficked was significant or significantly increasing, according to the US State Department.

Ineffective law enforcement, complicity at an official level and penalisation of victims rather than perpetrators were the main contributing factors in this regard.

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