by Billy Scanlan | agapewebsite.org
AIM SWAT Team investigators were having a meeting at a local café when they noticed 3 Chinese men with 3 Khmer women at a nearby table. Two of the women appeared very poor while the third seemed more affluent. Suspicious of this situation, members of the team situated themselves closer to the group and overheard negotiations between the affluent Khmer woman to send the other two women to China with the men.
Aware that marriage trafficking to China is a big problem, AIM SWAT Team members set up outside the café to conduct mobile surveillance of the group. On leaving the café, the group was followed throughout the day by the AIM SWAT Team as they traveled to various locations, including the Chinese Embassy and local medical centers, before arriving and entering a guesthouse in Phnom Penh.
Due to this flurry of activity and apparent preparations to move the women quickly, the team believed the 2 women would be transported out of Cambodia that night. They decided to contact the Military Anti-Human Trafficking and Juvenile Protection Police (AHTJPP) who joined with the AIM SWAT Team to assist with a raid. Following verbal approval from the prosecutor, the guesthouse was raided and both women were rescued. The 3 Chinese men and the affluent Khmer women were all arrested on suspicion of trafficking.
During subsequent interviews, the 2 intended victims admitted that they had been persuaded to marry 2 of the Chinese men with the promise of $4,000 each. The suspects made admissions to varying degrees and have now been charged with attempted human trafficking offenses. The suspects are all in prison awaiting trial. Both intended victims are currently staying at AIM Restoration Home and will be represented by the AIM SWAT legal team through the forthcoming court proceedings.
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