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Over 80 human traffickers still on the loose in Shan State

Myitmakha News Agency

Lashio, February 5 – a total of 81 perpetrators of human trafficking cases from the northern Shan State town of Lashio, who absconded from police capture during 2014-15, are yet to be caught, according to the anti-human trafficking police force.

Deputy head of the Lashio Anti-human Trafficking Police Force, U Kyi Pya Kyuu, stated that as well as incomplete information of the perpetrators’ whereabouts and perpetrators having fled and gone aground in other regions, they haven’t been able to make arrests as such individuals also reside in areas controlled by ethnic armed groups.

“In 2014, Myanmar nationals were among those human trafficking offenders that fled. In 2015 however, Chinese nationals became involved. Discussion is being held between the anti-human trafficking police departments of both countries. Awareness activities are also being carried out within the town of Lashio.” he said.

Of 143 perpetrators arrested in 49 cases of human trafficking within the town of Lashio during 2014, a total of 43 fled from custody. In the following year, 98 offenders were arrested and prosecuted from 36 cases of human trafficking, while 38 managed to escape.

Among the cases of human trafficking in northern Shan State during 2015 were two cases of forced marriage which involved Chinese nationals, in which 15 offenders were arrested. While those victims of human trafficking saved numbered 12, it is known that four still remain to be rescued.

“The Chinese and Myanmar police departments are working together to rescue those four remaining individuals who are victims of human trafficking.” added deputy head Kyi Pya Kyuu.

A series of Board Liaison Offices (BLO) have opened up along the Myanmar-China in the last nine years for the purposes of combating human trafficking. The first office opened at the Muse-Shwe Li boarder crossing in 2007, followed by an office at the boarder point of Lway Kyeh-Chanpone opening a year later. More recently in 2013, a further third office was established at the Lauk Khai-Nanthsan boarder crossing.

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