National police considers closure of anti-human trafficking unit

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THE Philippine National Police (PNP) Criminal Investigation and Detection Group (CIDG) is thinking of closing its operating unit that is on the forefront of the government’s campaign against human trafficking and prostitution.

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The CIDG will be submitting a proposal, a ‘draft’ of which was seen by The Manila Times, to the PNP higher headquarters recommending for the deactivation of the unit’s Women and Children’s Concern Division (WCCD).

Deactivation of the said unit is being proposed by the CIDG, presently headed by Chief Supt. Francisco Uyami, because of ‘alleged’ overlapping functions with other government agencies tasked against human trafficking.

A Camp Crame based police officer informed on the issue said that the proposal that was submitted for further study and approval of PNP national headquarters also

call for the creation of a “cold case unit” in the CIDG.

“There were some overlapping functions and this is the reason why they are making a study or proposal for its ‘deactivation’ and they were also planning to create another unit to handle cold cases,” the informed source said.

The function of the WCCD, once the proposal was approved, would be then transferred to the Philippine Center for Transnational Crime (PCTC), which handles cross border crimes such as drugs, terrorism and human trafficking.

“PCTC and WCCD may overlap in human trafficking, but the PCTC is more of a cross border or international in nature while the cases being handled by the WCCD is domestic in nature,” the informed source said.

The informed source said that talks of plan for the deactivation are causing some ‘demoralization’ among WCCD personnel.

The WCCD, in the past months of its operations was able to rescue several dozens of women and young girls that are being forced into prostitution in some bars, clubs and cyber-sex den.

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