The National Agency for the Prohibition of Trafficking in Persons, NAPTIP, has on Thursday arraigned a 25-year-old Abu Dhabi-based woman, Rita Ani, and her accomplices for human trafficking.
Ani, who hails from Enugu State, appeared before Justice Yusuf Halilu of an FCT High Court sitting in Maitama.
She was said to be a member of a human trafficking syndicate which engage Nigerian girls in prostitution in the United Arab Emirates.
She was arraigned alongside her elder sister, Ngozi, also known as Princess; Ozigi Abdulkarim, and Princewill James on a ten-count charge bordering on conspiracy and human trafficking.
It was gathered that Ani returned home from Abu Dhabi to perform her traditional marriage rites before moving to the United Kingdom with her fiancé. But she was arrested in Ibadan when her cover was blown by one of her victims.
According to the agency, the unnamed 19-year-old victim returned from Abu Dhabi after four months of forced prostitution “under very excruciating conditions”.
She was said to have been recruited from Gwarimpa, Abuja by her ex-boyfriend, Abdulkarim.
They prepared her travel documents, took her to Ogbomoso, Oyo State, where a fettish oath was administered on her before the journey,” the agency said.
The offences, according to NAPTIP, are contrary to Sections 13, 14, 18 and 26(b) of the Trafficking in Persons (Prohibition) Enforcement and Administration Act, 2015.
The defendants however, pleaded not guilty to all charges.
The counsel to Rita Ani and her sister did not file a formal application for their bail prompting the judge to remand them in prison.
Abdulkarim and James were, however, granted bail following their lawyer’s application on the conditions that they must provide two sureties each. The sureties, according to the judge, must not be below the rank of a Director in the Public Service and must own a house each in Abuja.
They must also show proof of being in service by presenting their letters of first appointment and last promotion.
The case was adjourned till September 13 for hearing.
- Mayowa Samuel
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