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Thursday, 17 June, 2021

Five men arrested for human trafficking in Venezuela coast

The men were arrested in Falcon state, western Venezuela and the main staging area for people trafficking overseas towards Aruba and Curacao.


Five men allegedly involved in a human trafficking network between crisis-stricken Venezuela, and the nearby Dutch Caribbean islands of Aruba and Curacao have been arrested Monday in Falcon state, Western Venezuela, by the FAES, the special forces of the National Police.

A local human-trafficking awareness NGO, a group of relatives of Venezuelans lost at sea trying to migrate, requested to the government release all information about 90 disappearances at sea obtained from the prisoners.

The committee said the five men in custody are tied to the disappearance of 33 migrants from Falcon, who sailed from La Vela Port, near to Coro, last year, and have not been seen since. Some 5 million Venezuelans have migrated since Nicolas Maduro took over in 2013.

After an inspection of four cell phones and a captured tablet computer, police determined that the men, as well as the equipment, had been used to coordinate human trafficking.

The gang received gold in payment for taking people from Venezuela to Aruba and Curacao, according to police, who are also investigate if they are in connection with other human-trafficking gangs.

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Relatives of migrants lost at sea wen to the Attorney General’s office in Caracas, requesting an investigation of the disappearances only a few days before the alleged traffickers’ been arrested.

Jhonny Romero, head of the victims’ committee, requested the authorities in Falcon and Venezuela, release all information about the band. The activist added that it is not the first time somebody is arrested for human-trafficking in that sea corridor, but argued that authorities have been so far indifferent to the plight of the migrant lost at sea.

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