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Six arrested in Vietnam for sex trafficking ring

21 march 2012, 15:32
Smuggled young women to China to work in the sex industry. ©REUTERS/China Daily
Smuggled young women to China to work in the sex industry. ©REUTERS/China Daily
Police in Vietnam have arrested six people for allegedly running a human trafficking ring smuggling young women to China to work in brothels, AFP reports citing state media.

The Vietnamese suspects, led by a 22-year-old former trafficking victim, smuggled some 21 young women to China to work in the sex industry over the past three years, the communist party mouthpiece Nhan Dan newspaper reported.

Twenty of the victims have been rescued from China and brought back to Vietnam, although the whereabouts of one other remains unknown, the report said, quoting a source in northern Nam Dinh province.

Nam Dinh province police refused to comment when contacted by AFP.

Victims were sold to brothels in China for around 10 million dong (up to $500) each, according to the English-language Vietnam News newspaper.

Between 2004 and 2009, Vietnam's Ministry of Public Security reported nearly 3,000 Vietnamese victims of human trafficking, which is a criminal offence under Vietnamese law. The majority of victims were girls under 15.

Because of the clandestine nature of the crimes and the difficulties collecting data, the figures almost certainly underestimate the extent of the problem, experts say.

In early March, Vietnam jailed 29 people linked to a human trafficking ring that sent teenage sex slaves to China. Police said there were at least 17 victims, including 10 teenage girls.

Trafficking victims may end up in China, other Asian countries, Western Europe or the Middle East for sexual exploitation, according to the UN Inter-Agency Project on Human Trafficking (UNIAP).

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