Updated: Cops rescue 19 girls in major human trafficking bust
Investigators believe they have cracked a major drug and prostitution ring following a joint overnight police operation in West Trinidad, in which 19 South American teenagers were rescued by police.
The female victims, between the ages of 15-19 years, were rescued following the raids in Westmoorings, St. James, Ariapita Avenue, Diego Martin, Morne Coco Road.
A quantity of narcotics and sums of local and foreign currency were also found and seized during the bust.
Police have since detained 10 men in connection with the finds.
The operation was coordinated by Police Commissioner Gary Griffith, and included officers of the Western Division, Special Operations Response Team (SORT), Counter Trafficking Unit (CTU), Financial Intelligence Bureau (FIB) and the Child Protection Unit (CPU).
The teens are currently being processed by the Counter Trafficking and Child Protection Units and translators have been brought in to assist in communication between officials and the victims.
Nineteen Spanish speaking teenage girls believed to be from Venezuela have been rescued by police following a major human trafficking bust at a Chinese restaurant along Ariapita Avenue, Port of Spain, early on Wednesday.
Police arrested six people of Asian descent for harbouring the girls, ages 15 to 19.
The early morning operation at the Stir Fry King Restaurant included officers of the Special Organisation Response Team (SORT), Child Protection Unit (CPU) and the Financial Investigation Branch (FIB).
The girls were medically examined, and are currently being kept at a police facility in the Western Division.
We’ll have more on this story as updates become available.