Borderguard force rescued a victim from human trafficker in northern Lào Cai Province. — Photo phapluatplus.vn
LÀO CAI — Trafficking of women and children has been on the rise in recent years in the northern border province of Lào Cai, making it a hotspot for this crime.
Over the first four months of 2016, the provincial Border Guard has discovered and handled 13 cases of human trafficking and rescued 25 victims.
During the 2014-25 period, the provincial Border Guard uncovered 67 cases, arresting 92 individuals and rescuing 214 victims.
Among the cases detected last year, the Border Guard discovered and quashed an interprovincial women trafficking ring that also operated in An Giang, Kiên Giang, Hậu Giang, Bình Thuận and Cần Thơ. As many as 15 victims were rescued and reunited with their families.
In the latest case last month, the border guard at the Border Station of Lào Cai International Border Gate rescued a five-year-old girl, who was being smuggled into China.
According to Head of the provincial Border Guard’s Drug and Criminal Department Nguyễn Văn Thái, human trafficking has become more complicated now compared with previous years.
The criminals use more sophisticated ways to lure women and children, and the victims come from many localities.
The offenders make use of information technology, such as social media, to approach and get acquainted with women. They seduce them, pretending to love them, and invite them to visit their families or other places. The traffickers then take the victims to remote locations along the border and force them to cross it.
This year especially, a group of young men from various ethnic minority groups took advantage of their relationships with women and children to sell them to traffickers in other countries.
Most of the victims are aged between 15 and 30 and live in remote, rural or mountainous areas; they are typically uneducated and have a limited understanding of the law. They are also often unemployed and face economic difficulties.
Victims rescued by border guards will be sent to a centre established by the provincial Department of Labour, Invalids and Social Affairs, where they will receive preliminary assistance and support before being reunited with their families. For instance, they will receive vocational training or be taught to read and write; they will also learn basic life skills.
To help deal with the problem, the provincial border guard has actively worked with their Chinese counterparts to fight against human trafficking, while local authorities have promoted campaigns and increased information dissemination to raise people’s awareness of this kind of crime, particularly among those from ethnic minority groups, so they will not be tricked by traffickers.
It is estimated that 400-500 trafficking cases involving almost 1,000 victims are discovered in the country each year, according to the Ministry of Public Security. - VNS