National Agency for the Prohibition of Trafficking in Persons, NAPTIP, has secured additional 13 convictions of human traffickers.
This was contained in a press statement made available to Nigerian Pilot in Abuja, yesterday by NAPTIP.
It stated that the convictions were from various Federal High Courts across the country, bringing the total convictions so far to 271.
According to the statement, the convicted human traffickers who are at present serving various jail terms, were arrested by operatives of NAPTIP in different locations within the country and subsequently arraigned in courts.
While Federal High Courts sitting in Sokoto and Uyo convicted 8 human traffickers and sentenced them to various terms of imprisonment, 6 other persons were convicted and sentenced by Federal High Courts sitting in Benin, Ogun and Jos.
“In the first legal battle, a Federal High Court sitting in Abeokuta, Ogun State capital in suit No. FHC/AB/78C/13, convicted one Jennifer Ifeoma Umeh and two others who were charged under sections 12(a), 13(a), 15 and 19(a) of the Trafficking in Persons Act 2003 as amended, for deceitfully inducing three girls for sexual exploitation.
While two of the accused were sentenced to 7 years imprisonment, the 3rd accused person was sentenced to 5 years imprisonment without an option of fine,” it explained.
A Federal High Court sitting in Jos, Plateau State capital sentenced one other Human Trafficker to 10 years imprisonment without an option of fine. The convict, Apisu Abdullahi, was charged under section 19(b) of Trafficking in Persons Act 2003 as amended, for deceitful inducement for the purpose of forced labour.
Similarly, a Federal High Court sitting in Benin, the Edo State capital, sentenced one Grace Friday Asuquo Okon to 2 years imprisonment for sexual exploitation.
In the same vein, a Federal high Court sitting in Sokoto State convicted a three-member-trafficking gang believed to be notorious in trafficking within the Northern part of the country.
Also, in the charge No/ FHC/S/35c/2015, two of the convicted human traffickers were arraigned on a two-count charge of promotion of foreign travels which promotes prostitution as well as deceitfully inducing the victims to move from one place to another, contrary to section 16 and 19 of the Trafficking in Persons Prohibition Law 2003 as amended.
In a similar development, two Federal High Court Judges sitting in Uyo, the Akwa Ibom State capital, sentenced four convicted human traffickers who were arrested by the Uyo Zonal Command of the agency.
Reacting to these convictions, the Director –General of NAPTIP, Mrs. Beatrice Jedy-Agba commended the Judges for the good job. She, however, stressed the need for all hands to be on deck in the fight against human trafficking in Nigeria.