BEIRUT – Lebanon`s security forces have dismantled the country`s biggest known sex trafficking ring and liberated 75 mainly Syrian women, a security source said on Friday.
They had been raped and beaten, while some showed signs of “mutilation”, a statement from the Internal Security Forces said.
“This is the largest sex trafficking ring we`ve uncovered since the outbreak of the Syrian war,” a Lebanese security source told AFP.
Police officers in the Mount Lebanon region north of Beirut “identified and arrested a group of people who made up Lebanon`s most dangerous human trafficking network”, the ISF statement said.
Cops in the Mount Lebanon district north of Beirut “distinguished and captured a gathering of individuals who made up Lebanon`s most unsafe human trafficking system”, the ISF proclamation said.
They “rescued 75 women, most of them Syrian nationals who had been subjected to beatings and psychological and physical torture, forced to perform sexual acts and had indecent images of them taken and distributed,” it said.
Ten men and eight women guarding the apartments where the victims were kept have been arrested, the statement said.
Two other suspects remain at large.
Speaking to AFP, the security source added that “an eight-month-old baby, likely the child of one of the rescued women, was also found”.
Even before the Syrian conflict erupted in 2011, Syrian women had been pushed into the illicit sex trade in neighbouring Lebanon.
“However, as with any war, conflict has made Syrian women and children even more vulnerable,” the source said.
Nirmala Panta rape, murder case : Locals protest after wrong suspect paraded
BHIMDUTTANAGAR — Locals who were protesting against the rape and murder of Nirmala Panta of Kanchanpur’s Bhimdatta Municipality, have enforced shutdown in Bhimduttanagar Bazaar on Tuesday, protesting police’s failure to reveal facts behind the murder of 13-year-old girl and parading wrong suspect on Monday.
The District Police Office, organising a press conference on Monday,had made public Dilip Singh Bista (41), of Baghphanta, Bhimdatta Municipality-19 as Nirmala’s murderer.
Locals have shut down the market area stating that police were not being able to make public the true murderer(s) as they are not convinced by the findings of police citing that Bista was mentally unsound, according to the District Police Office.
Transportation has also been halted.
Bista, a resident of Khanna Chauraha area in Bhimdutta Municipality-19, was apprehended near the scene of crime on Sunday, according to police.
Police making public the wrong suspect has infuriated the locals and fueled the protest.
The agitators including various civil society organisations and human rights defenders have been picketing the District Administration Office and staging rally on the street mounting pressure on the police to reveal the facts behind the heinous crime.
Meanwhile, it had been learnt that police have fired rounds of teargas shells to contain the agitated mob.
Nirmala was found murdered in a sugarcane field on July 27, a day after she had gone to her friend’s home to get a notebook.Follow @gorkhapost