Human traffickers use children in new scheme

January 02, 2020

AUTHORITIES at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport yesterday said human trafficking syndicates have a new modus operandi with female victims  made to pose as nannies of minor children to evade scrutiny by immigration officers.

Bureau of Immigration port operations division chief Grifton Medina said the scheme was uncovered after two women were intercepted at the NAIA Terminal 3 while accompanying minors in going abroad, purportedly to visit the children’s parents.

Medina said a 42-year-old woman attempted to leave for Macau when she was intercepted last Dec. 10. She presented herself as the guardian of a 14-year-old girl.

The other incident happened last Dec. 17 when a 31-year-old woman was stopped from leaving for the United Arab Emirates with a 16-year-old boy.

According to Ma. Timotea Barizo, chief of the Travel Control and Enforcement Unit (TCEU), both passengers initially insisted that they were the nannies of their minor companions. “Eventually, they confessed that they do not know their companions and they were merely asked to accompany them by the parents to be able to travel abroad.”

BI records showed that the girl had twice left the country for Macau with two different women while the boy had traveled once to Dubai with another female guardian, but all their companions never returned.

“We believe that those alleged yayas ended up working abroad without proper documentation,” Barizo said.