Monday, March 24, 2014

21 Girls Rescued From Bars And Nightspots In Abatan, Buguias

Accompanied by social workers from the Department of Social Welfare and Development, Criminal Investigation and Detection Group operatives swooped into bars in Abatan, Buguias last week and nabbed 21 women. Seventeen of these are bar girls. The other four are managers, handlers and cashiers. The girls were brought by the police to Baguio City for processing.

The Philippine Star reported that the CIDG were tipped off about these young girls working at various nightspots in the burgeoning northern town. The Manila Standard mentioned that four suspected prostitution dens were raided by the police.

Of the 17 bar girls rescued, 10 are minors which means they are below 18 years of age. Although some of the girls are from the Cordilleran region, most of them are from the lowlands. 7 are from Bulacan, 1 from Ilocos Sur, 1 from Pangasinan, 2 from La Union, 4 from Benguet and 2 from Mt. Province.

Of the 4 girls from Benguet, three are from the town of Mankayan and 1 is from Itogon. The 2 girls from Mt. Province are from the towns of Paracelis and Bauko.

What's even more saddening about these reports is the statement of Sr. Supt. Jimmy Catanes, the regional director of the CIDG. According to him, "Prostitution in Abatan, Buguias is deeply rooted because of backing by numerous influential people." So this problem of prostitution in Abatan is worse than what it seems. It's unclear as to who these "influential people" are as Catanes didn't elaborate.

Prostitution has been around in Abatan for years now. It's also spreading to neighboring towns. Catanes has a message for the people involved in such activities. “We want to get to the bottom of these and get the coddlers and traffickers of women and children.” Catanes stated.