BAGUIO CITY – Ten women were rescued by joint personnel of the Baguio City Police Office (BCPO) and the Police Regional Office (PRO) in the Cordillera in a raid that was conducted in a bar serving as an alleged prostitution den along Marcos Highway recently.
BCPO City Director Police Col. Glen Lonogan disclosed that the rescued women are aged 26 to 40 and who come from the different parts of the country and serving as alleged guest relation officers (GROs) at the Pharazus Bar along Marcos highway.
During the said raid, Lonogan claimed that the operating troops arrested 2 males, namely, Roldan Mangila dela Cruz from Caloocan City and Louie Jamora Macatuno from Las Pinas City, both of legal age and temporarily residing in Baguio City.
He said that the arrested males will be charged for violation of the pertinent provisions of Republic Act (RA) 9208 otherwise known as the Anti-Trafficking in Persons Act of 2003 and RA 10964 or the Expanded Anti-Trafficking In Persons Act of 2021.
On the other hand, the rescued women were placed under the custody of the City Social Welfare and Development Office (CSWDO) for counselling before being turned over to their respective families as the said office is now trying to contact their close relatives for coordination purposes.
Police authorities are looking into the possibility of filing additional charges of violation of existing health and safety protocols by the inter-agency task force for the management of emerging and re-emerging infectious diseases as bars are not supposed to be operational under the Alert Level 2 system.
Lonogan warned erring bar owners to comply with the implementation of the established restrictions to prevent them from being apprehended and charged accordingly for their violation as night spots are not yet allowed to operate under the prevailing restrictions imposed by the inter-agency task force on the local government to prevent the occurrence of untoward incidents that might cause another surge in Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) cases. By Dexter A. See