West Java Police have arrested three people suspected to be behind the trafficking of 18 Indonesian women sent to China under marriage schemes.
A woman and a man have been arrested on suspicion of duping women in various regions of Java. Other suspects include a foreigner identified only as GCS who allegedly served as middleman in China and another foreigner identified as TMK who remains at large. The international human trafficking ring operated from December 2017 to June, West Java Police chief Insp. Gen. Agung Budi Maryoto said.
The suspects allegedly offered the women, aged 16 to 28 and mostly from West Java, the opportunity to many Chinese men.
“The victims were promised a good life, monthly incomes and that they would be allowed to return home every two months,” he said on Thursday.
The police opened an investigation after receiving a report from a victim who escaped an apartment where she and other women were being held in North Jakarta. Investigators raided the apartment and rescued five women.
“Twelve 12 women have been sent to China. We will work with local police, Interpol and the Indonesian Embassy in China to help them return home,” he added.
The recruiters allegedly asked the women’s parents to sign contracts and gave them Rp 10 million (US$690) each.
Agung said based on the preliminary investigation, women who had been sent had suffered physical abuse at the hand of their husbands.
“Other victims are forced to work or are resold to other men in China,” he added.
The suspects will be charged under the 2007 Human Trafficking Law, which carries a maximum sentence of 15 years’ imprisonment and a maximum fine of Rp 600 million. (nor/rin)