14 children rescued, 4 suspects nabbed in Camarines Sur town

Contributed photo
Contributed photo

POLICE rescued 14 minors and arrested four suspects during an operation against online sexual exploitation of children in Bombon, Camarines Sur on May 7, 2021.

The operation was conducted by the Women and Children Protection Center-Luzon Field Unit (WCPC-LFU) and the Regional Anti-Cybercrime Unit-Region 5 (Racu 5), together with the Camarines Sur Provincial Police Office Women and Children Protection Desk, Bombon Municipal Police Station, and Naga City Police Office, in coordination with Bombon Municipal Social Welfare and Development Office and officials of Barangay San Antonio, Bombon, Camarines Sur.

The arrests happened around 10 a.m. during the simultaneous implementation of four warrants to search, seize and examine computer data (WSSECD) issued by Judge Pablo Cabillan Formaran III of the Regional Trial Court Branch 21, 5th Judicial Region, Naga City.

Among the pieces of evidence seized during the operation were digital devices containing several child sexual exploitation materials, a sex toy, and several money transfer receipts showing foreigners as senders.

The WSSECD implementation led to the arrest of three female suspects and one male suspect (brother of one of the female suspects).

The victims, with age ranging two to 17 years, are now under the care of the local social welfare office. Seven of them are children of the female suspect who previously sent child sexual exploitation materials to an Australian sex offender in exchange for money.

The Australian Federal Police arrested the Australian offender in February 2021 and subsequently forwarded a referral to the Philippine Internet Crimes Against Children Center (Picacc).

Four of the victims rescued are children of another female suspect, while the other three victims are stepchildren of the two suspects' brother.

"Our pursuit to rescue and protect children from online sexual exploitation will not stop until we have arrested the last trafficker and abuser doing this vile crime. The Philippine National Police, through the Women and Children Protection Center, is committed to collaborating with international law enforcement agencies to bring this borderless crime to an end," said Police Brigadier General Alessandro Abella, chief of WCPC.

The suspects will be charged with violation of Republic Act (RA) 9208 as amended by RA 10364 or the "Anti-Trafficking in Persons Act," RA 9775 or the "Anti-Child Pornography Act of 2009," in relation to RA 10175 or the "Cybercrime Prevention Act of 2012."

A model of enhanced global law enforcement response against online sexual exploitation of children, Picacc is composed of PNP-WCPC, National Bureau of Investigation-Anti-Human Trafficking Division, Australian Federal Police, UK National Crime Agency, and the National Police of the Netherlands, in partnership with International Justice Mission.

The WCPC runs a 24-hour Facebook page helpline, where people can report online sexual abuse and exploitation of children. Visit and report at Aleng Pulis Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/pnpwcpc.alengpulis. (PR)


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