Japanese man held for escorting teen

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A Japanese national was held for allegedly engaging in human trafficking after he was caught escorting a Filipina minor on Friday afternoon at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA) terminal 2, the Police Aviation Security Group (Avsegroup) said on Saturday.

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The Avsegroup said the suspect, Aiko Watanabe, and the 18-year-old Filipina were put on hold at immigration after authorities found that the teenager assumed a “fake” Japanese name.

Both were supposed to board Philippine Airlines flight PR438 bound for Nagoya, Japan, the Avsegroup added.

The teenager admitted during an investigation that she really wanted to work in Japan because of poverty, the Avsegroup said.

Watanabe and the girl were turned over to the Inter-Agency Council Against Trafficking (Iacat) personnel and later transferred to the office of the National Bureau of Investigation at NAIA.

On February this year, two women suspected to be victims of human trafficking were barred from leaving the country.

Their alleged illegal recruiters, one of them a NAIA employee, were immediately arrested by airport authorities.

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