POLICE rescued nine minors, aged 13 to 17, from alleged trafficker during an operation in Paranas, Samar Wednesday, March 3, 2021.
The minors were all residents of Barangay Sto Niño, San Agustin, Surigao Del Sur
Police Regional Office (PRO)-Eastern Visayas identified the suspect as Marialina Vasquez, 51, married, housekeeper, and a resident of Barangay Bacolod, Surigao Del Sur.
“Under my command, I will see to it that enforcement of the laws will be heightened in order to prevent any incident of exploitation of our minors. Appropriate penalty shall be meted against individuals who treat minors as their easy preys,’’ said Brigadier General Ronaldo De Jesus, regional director, on the arrest of the suspect.
Police said the victims were rescued after the vehicle transporting them was intercepted in Barangay Buray, Paranas on Wednesday afternoon.
The rescue mission also took place amid the “anti-colorum” operations launched by the Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB) enforcers, in coordination with Paranas Municipal Police Station, and Samar Police Provincial Office.
A vehicle which was later turned over to LTFRB Regional Office-Eastern Visayas in Palo, Leyte incidentally found out illegally transporting minors, according to the regional police command.
Initial investigation showed that the minors were initially recruited for employment in Villa Alfredo Resort in Purok 1, Barangay San Fernando, Pampanga, in consideration of a P7,000 monthly salary, by a certain Gerald Tebale, 25, and resident of Purok 3 Hurnasan, Barangay San Agustin, Surigao Del Sur, the report said.
“Tebale was said to be accompanied by Vasquez in transporting the minors, however he was not around during the said operation. The concerned unit was already directed to conduct further investigation of the possible whereabouts of Tebale,” PRO-Eastern Visayas said in a statement.
Operating elements of Palo Municipal Police Station, Leyte Provincial Police Office, Women and Children Protection Desk-PRO-Eastern Visayas, and social welfare officers of Palo also proceeded to the area "to enact necessary rescue measures." (SunStar Philippines)