Couple ‘used kids for porn’

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Tuesday, May 28, 2013


A COUPLE who charged pedophiles money to watch their 13-year-old daughter posing online was arrested in a raid by the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) in Barangay Ibabao, Cordova last Sunday morning.

Their daughter, another girl, 14, and a boy, 17, were rescued and brought to the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD), said NBI-Central Visayas Director Antonio Pagatpat.

“During our briefing, the woman was labeled as ‘the queen of cyberporn’,” he said on Monday. “What makes her operation worse is that she used her own daughter and the children in the neighborhood and relatives.”

One of the suspects, Mila (real name withheld), said she got involved in online pornography because she didn’t want her family to stay poor.

But she also said she regretted “selling” her daughter, who is an incoming third year high school student. She warned others not to follow her.

Apology

“Siyempre mangayo ko og pasaylo niya (Of course, I will ask her to forgive me),” said Mila. “Gibuhat nako to tungod sa akong panglantaw nga mahatag nako ang tanan niyang gikinahanglan (I only did that because I wanted her to have everything she needed).”

Mila said she earned P3,000 to P5,000 per transaction, coursed through money transfer.

Couple arrested in Cordova, Cebu for cybersex
NO PARENTAL GUIDANCE. Cebu Assistant Provincial Prosecutor Rustom Presas Jr. questions a couple that allegedly used their daughter and two other minors in an online porn operation based in their home in Ibabao, Cordova. The law against trafficking prohibits news organizations from naming the suspects and complainants in such cases. (Sun.Star Photo/Joseph C. Tubilan)

She said she had stopped her business after her neighbors were arrested in 2011.

Cordova Mayor Adelino Sitoy, in a phone interview, said he was disgusted after he heard about the raid.

“Wa gyod pa matagam na sila (They never learned),” he said. “It was the same area that was raided before.”

In June 2011, a couple was arrested by the NBI for presenting three of their own children and a niece naked in front of a computer-mounted camera. A month later, three women were arrested for the same offense by the Cebu Provincial Police Office (CPPO).

Debt

The Cebu Provincial Prosecutor’s Office will elevate the cases against Mila, 35, and her husband Nilo (real name withheld), 37, to court today (Tuesday), after both accused opted not to avail themselves of their right to preliminary investigation.

Assistant Provincial Prosecutor Rustom Presas Jr. conducted the inquest proceeding.

The cases are for violations of Republic Act (RA) 9208, or the Anti-Trafficking in Persons Act of 2003; section 4 of RA 9775, or the Anti-Child Pornography Law; and Article 281 of the Revised Penal Code in relation to RA 8792, or the Electronic Commerce Act of 2000.

Violations of RA 9208 are non-bailable.

It punishes any person who “recruits, transports, transfers, harbors, provides, or receives a person by any means, including those done under the pretext of domestic or overseas employment or training or apprenticeship, for the purpose of prostitution, pornography, sexual exploitation, forced labor, slavery, involuntary servitude or debt bondage.”

Joint effort

Mila and Nilo were arrested around 3 a.m. by the NBI-Anti-Human Trafficking Division (AHTRAD) in coordination with NBI, DSWD, Inter-Agency Council Against Trafficking (IACAT), US Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), an agency under the Department of Homeland Security, and International Justice Mission (IJM).

Sun.Star Cebu is withholding the names of the couple in compliance with Republic Act 9208, the Anti-Trafficking in Persons Act of 2003, and to protect the identities of their children.

Pagatpat said the raid was based on the search warrant issued by Regional Trial Court (RTC) Branch 10 Judge Soliver Peras.

He said the NBI in Manila was informed by the ICE, after a foreigner was arrested for viewing nude minors online.

Seized from the couple was a computer containing several lewd pictures and videos of minors.

Tempted

The transaction with Mila started last Saturday evening. A poseur, who acted as a foreigner who was a prospective client, contacted the suspect online.

In an interview from her detention cell in the NBI-Central Visayas, Mila admitted she is into online pornography. But she denied she is a big-time operator.

“Natintal ko atong Dominggo,” she said. “Mao’y pagbalik to nako (I got tempted last Sunday. That was the time I resumed the business).”

She said her husband should have never been arrested because the latter did not tolerate her business.

But in their daughter’s affidavit, Nilo consented to Mila’s illegal activity.

Before the arrest, Mila said she was chatting with a foreigner last Saturday. She was about to sleep.

Sleep

The foreigner, who identified himself to be American, wanted a lewd show from minors after he saw someone beside Mila.

“So ako gi-yes-yes,” she said. “Wa ko moingon nga mo-show sila.”

Afterwards, the authorities barged into her house and arrested her.

Pagatpat said they will continue their monitoring of cybersex den operations in Cebu and Central Visayas.

The NBI-Central Visayas this month has also arrested two Australian nationals allegedly involved in human trafficking.

“We will not allow our minors to be exploited,” said Pagatpat. (Sun.Star Cebu)

Published in the Sun.Star Cebu newspaper on May 28, 2013.

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