No fewer than 38 people mostly young boys and girls were intercepted in separate places in Benue State on Friday and Saturday when they were to be trafficked outside the state.
The first incident involved six victims and a suspect who were picked up on Friday at a motor park in Makurdi, the Benue State capital.
According to Makurdi Zonal Commander of National Agency for the Prohibition of Trafficking in Persons (NAPTIP), Iveren Bai in a statement made available to newsmen said that the suspects were rounded up following the receipt of a call from a concerned citizen.
According to her, “During the Early hours of Friday the 7th of January 2022, the Makurdi Zonal Command received a call from a concerned citizen from Duku Motor Part at Wurukum Makurdi, who alerted the command of a suspected case of Human Trafficking involving seven ladies of which one is the suspected trafficker.
“Officers of the command arrived Duku Motor Park some few minutes after receiving the call and met the six ladies and the suspect who said they were all traveling to Lagos.
“The victims were between the ages 16 and 24 years by facial analysis. At the time of the arrival, the Nigerian police were also on ground because they were also called on the matter.
She further said that about N500,000 was found on the suspect alongside some foreign currencies which raised the suspicion that the victims were to be moved to destination outside the country yet to be determined.
Mrs Bai added, “The ladies were all moved to the office of the Nigerian Police in company of the officers of NAPTIP and the police are carrying out preliminary investigation for onward transfer to NAPTIP for further investigation and possible prosecution.
The NAPTIP boss also warned criminally minded members of the public to desist from such evil act or be prepared to face the wrath of the law.
Also on Saturday 8th of January, Benue State Police Command intercepted two buses loaded with 32 young girls and boys at Ameladu area of Gboko Local Government area of the state