Two FIA officers held over corruption charges

Sources say officials released human trafficking suspect after arrest

Saleh Mughal May 23, 2024


Two officers of the FIA Anti-Human Trafficking Cell in Islamabad were arrested and charged with exceeding their authority and engaging in proven corruption.

The officers arrested a suspect involved in human smuggling and trafficking and later made a deal under the pretence of reconciling with the victims and subsequently released him.

FIA Director Islamabad Zone, Shehzad Nadeem Bukhari, took strict notice and following an inquiry, he directed officials concerned to register a case against both officers.

According to officials, an inquiry was conducted based on a complaint by Muhammad Rafi to the FIA Human Trafficking Cell. As per the FIR, an agent named Imran Khan had deceived Muhammad Rafi, his four cousins, and other relatives and friends by promising them jobs in Saudi Arabia.

Khan collected Rs1.1 million through EasyPaisa and mobile cash accounts and took their passports on Sixth Road. However, neither were the individuals sent to Saudi Arabia for employment nor was the amount, including medical expenses exceeding Rs1 million was reimbursed.

Upon referring the case to the Federal Investigation Agency (FIA), officers Bilal Awan and Aqib Mehmood of the Anti-Human Trafficking Cell, without informing senior officers, conducted a raid in Faizabad and took Imran Khan into their custody. Later, after promising reconciliation, the suspect was released, and six passports, along with the suspect's identity card and mobile phone, were retained.

The spokesperson of the FIA said that both officers have been suspended and arrested for their involvement. A case has also been filed against them. An investigation has begun, and raids are being conducted to arrest the agent named in the case.

Published in The Express Tribune, May 24th, 2024.



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