KUANTAN (Bernama): Pahang police foiled a human trafficking syndicate when they rescued 17 Thai women in a raid on an entertainment centre here Monday (Jan 7) night.
State Criminal Investigation Department chief Datuk Othman Nayan said the women aged between 21 and 36 were forced to work as hostesses.
“We believe they entered the country with a social visit pass and have been manipulated by the premises owner to keep renewing their passes to avoid detection by the authorities,” he told a press conference at the Pahang police headquarters here Tuesday.
Othman added that during the raid police also detained 36 individuals comprising employees and customers of the entertainment centre.
“A 32-year-old local man believed to be the manager of the centre was also arrested under Section 12 of the Anti-Trafficking in Persons and Anti-Smuggling of Migrants Act 2007,” he said.
Othman said the police were always carrying out inspections and collecting intelligence to ensure that licensed entertainment outlets in the state operate according to regulations.
“We will not hesitate to take action against any entertainment premises owners who violate the rules.
“We wish to emphasise that these operations are not aimed at disrupting businesses but are part of our efforts to eradicate social problems in society,” he said. – Bernama