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Woman to front court for human trafficking charges

August 19, 2018 6:29 pm

A 31-year-old-woman from Nasole in Nasinu is expected to be produced at the Suva Magistrates Court today charged with 11 counts of obtaining property by deception and one count of money laundering.

The women’s sister who resides in Australia has also being charged in absentia with five counts of obtaining property by deception and one count of money laundering. An arrest warrant for the woman is expected to also be filed in court today.

Police Spokesperson Ana Naisoro says the two sisters have now been charged on 17 counts jointly for their alleged involvement in trafficking 17 Fijian citizens in New Zealand.

The two were alleged to have facilitated the travel of seventeen Fijian citizens who were exploited through slavery and became victims of Human Trafficking in Auckland New Zealand between April to August 2014.

The arrest of the 31-year-old woman was the result of a successful joint operation between the Fiji Police Force, NZ Police and the NZ immigration.

The two had been operating a travel agent business from Nina Street, Suva and are alleged to have placed an advertisement in one of the dailies about employment opportunities in New Zealand.

Naisoro adds these victims were allegedly exploited through forced labour to work in unfavorable weather conditions, less or no wages, having to share accommodation, both male and female victims in one room together.

Both suspects had remitted and received more than $83,000 to and from NZ from an accomplice Faroz Ali who was convicted in NZ in April of this year for human trafficking offences.

He is currently serving a prison sentence of nine years and six months.