The National Agency for the Prohibition of Trafficking in Persons (NAPTIP) on Wednesday listed the tricks traffickers use to find their victims.
Josiah Emerole, NAPTIP’s director of public relations, said at a training for media practitioners in Asaba, Delta, that traffickers often take advantage of victims’ ignorance.
As reported by the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN), the four-day training was organized by NAPTIP in collaboration with Action Against Trafficking in Persons and Smuggling of Migrants in Nigeria (A-TIPSOM NIGERIA),
A-TIPSOM NIGERIA is a Spanish project funded by the European Union (EU) to combat human trafficking.
The training also aims to develop standard reporting templates for members of NAPTIP’s media corps and public relations department.
Emerole said the new tricks of traffickers include technology, hunting, fishing, surrogacy, sports, especially soccer, orphanages and shelters.
He said traffickers used to use direct contact, also known as physical contact, but have now opted for the new tricks.
Emerole explained that traffickers often use social media to reach out to the public, especially their targets.
“This is how innocent Nigerians have been trafficked. Thank God NAPTIP is taking action against these evil traffickers,” he said.
On the trapping tricks, he said the traffickers would constantly ask for friendship on social media, either using nicknames or using imposters.
In explaining the trapping tricks, Emerole said traffickers often posted enticing job offers to lure unsuspecting job seekers.
However, the NAPTIP director stressed that technology has positive implications for crime prevention, law enforcement and the rapid dissemination of news.
“Social media offers, however, need to be studied by the agency,” he said.
He explained that any couple with children still using surrogates could be a suspected case of child trafficking or child labor.
“Orphan trafficking is rampant among unregistered orphanages and homes whose owners solicit poor parents under the pretext of taking care of their children,” he said.
“We appeal to all parents to check the legal status of the orphanage with the relevant local government before releasing their charges,” he said.
According to Emerole, traffickers often disguise themselves as orphanage operators.
“Not long ago, the agency recovered about 75 children out of about 140 children trafficked from an orphanage,” he said.
“NAPTIP will never stop looking for these cunning people and exposing them,” he said.
He further disclosed that over 20,000 Nigerian youths were trapped in shacks in mining areas in Mali where they were sexually exploited.