Cebu News

Mother, 22, nabbed for trafficking kids

Michael Vencynth H. Braga - The Freeman

CEBU, Philippines - A 22-year-old woman in Cordova town landed in jail on Saturday for allegedly taking nude photos and videos of her two children through her smartphone and selling them to online customers.

The mother (name withheld pursuant to the confidentiality rule for the victims) was allegedly showing her two children, aged five and two years old, taking a bath to a poseur-customer through an instant message and voice or video call service, Skype, when the police came to rescue the children.

Chief Inspector Rose Santolorin, assistant chief of the Women and Children Protection Center-Visayas, said the entrapment operation came on the heels of the report of an informant that the suspect is engaged in trafficking.

The police then conducted verification and surveillance against the mother since July 21. They later learned that the suspect has already transacted with 70 foreign customers based on the evaluation of a money transfer center.

It was only on July 30 that the police were able to secure a search warrant against the mother. During the operation, the police transacted through a poseur-customer with the mother, who showed her two nude children online for $70 or more than P3,000.

Santolorin said the mother will face charges for violation of Republic Act 10175 (Cybercrime Prevention Act) and RA 10364 (Expanded Anti-Trafficking in Persons Act).

Since the victims were minors, the offense was considered qualified trafficking, which is non-bailable.

Sought for comment, the mother denied engaging into the activity, saying that it was the first time she took photos of her children as requested by the poseur-customer.

She said she did not know the motive of the customer, but she still granted his request out of trust since they were already friends.

“Miingon ang ka-chat nako nangayo og tabang nga gusto motan-aw sa akong mga anak nga naked. Misalig pod ko kay wa ko kabalo maingon ani. Nag-send ko og pictures nga naligo sila… Abi nako tinarong iyaha,” she said.

She said she has already been separated from her husband a year ago and sells mangoes as source of income.

She is currently detained at Fuente Police Station in Cebu City pending the filing of the complaints against her. (FREEMAN)

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