The Edo State Police Command has rescued 26 victims that were trafficked from other states to Benin City as beggars The police said the victims were six women, 19 children and one teenager, adding that they were rescued in conjunction with a vigilante group.
The state Police Public Relations Officer, Kontongs Bello, in a statement made available to The Guardian, said the victims were rescued on April 15.
He said the women and children were believed to have been trafficked from Ebonyi, Imo, Abia, Anambra and Akwa Ibom states to Evbuotubu in Ekenwan road axis of Benin City.
The women, according to police spokesman, confessed that they were lured from their various home states by a woman named simply Jennifer, also called Ezine, to Benin City in the guise of getting financial aid from the state government.
He said: “The suspect is now on the run. The victims were lured in a guise that Edo State government is giving financial support to single mothers with new babies, especially twins, but on arrival in Benin City, they did not see any support.
“They were now forced to engage in illicit business. The women said they were forced to go to the street to beg for their mistress Jennifer. They further stated that only pea-nut was given to them to take care of their children and feeding from proceed of the begging.”
Meanwhile, Bello has enjoined members of the public to disregard a trending video on social media that some women and children were rescued from baby factory by the police in Benin City. He said the story was false, adding that it was the imagination of some mischief makers to paint Edo State in bad light.