Residents of the Sebrepor community in the Kpone Katamanso Municipality of the Greater Accra Region were left in shock after the Tema Regional Police Command uncovered a suspected human trafficking syndicate in the area.
This discovery led to the arrest of two West African nationals, whom residents claimed were holding 12 other nationals captive, on Sunday, August 20, 2023.
During the operation, 15 laptops were retrieved from a five-bedroom house where 12 Nigerians aged 18 to 30 were allegedly subjected to unspeakable horrors and coerced into engaging in cyber-crime for sustenance by two ring leaders.
Residents speculate that these twelve individuals believed to have been trafficked from Nigeria, were forcibly held captive by their Nigerian captors.
A continuous disturbance from within the compound left neighbours uneasy, compelling them to raise an alarm that ultimately led to the apprehension of all 14 occupants.
“We witnessed from the window that the person was signalling for help. He looked extremely weak. It was somewhat obscured by the net covering the burglar-proof. This alarmed us, so we informed the area’s Assembly Member, who summoned the police,” a resident shared.
According to the community members, these victims, appearing malnourished, were compelled to engage in cyber-crime as a trade-off for sustenance.
An eyewitness noted, “When the two police motorbikes arrived and forced their way into the house, they discovered twelve individuals who seemed hungry, their complexion almost pale, as though they were held captive. It was a dire situation. They were placed there, hungry. If they didn’t secure clients, hunger awaited. They needed to work and deceive clients online before they could eat.”
“It was undoubtedly against their will. One of the victims mentioned that they were confined there without food,” noted another resident.
Prince Jacob Adjorvor, Assembly Member for Sebrepor Electoral Area, confirmed the incident during an interview with Joy News.
“A combined team of police and military personnel was called in; we reached an agreement and proceeded. Upon entry, we counted 12 young men, along with their alleged leader, and approximately 15 laptops.”
“These items were seized and subsequently transferred to the Emefs Police Station.
However, due to immigration-related concerns, they were later sent to the Tema Regional Police Command in the evening.”