In the wake of revelations that an alarming number of Guyanese women are prostituting in Barbados, the Island’s Minister of Home Affairs Edmund Hinckson has expressed the belief that a sophisticated human trafficking network is actually bringing a number of young Guyanese women to Barbados to be involved in nefarious activities.
This concern was raised by the Minister who had issued a missive in the wake of the arrest of a Guyanese woman who was subsequently deported, after being found engaging in nefarious activities at a brothel in Bridgetown.
Referring to possible signs of trafficking, the Minister pointed out that after the woman was detained, she became uneasy and afraid after several men visited her while she was in custody.
After the men had left, the woman immediately changed her story and recanted a confession which might have implicated certain people.
“Based on her change in behaviour, it is strongly believed that some form of manipulation was exerted on her by these visitors to her”, said Minister Hinckson.
Another source at Barbados’ Immigration Department, in an invited comment, told the Guyana Guardian earlier today that there is indeed the belief that a network of traffickers is paying the airline tickets to bring these women into Barbados, and then prostitute them.
As a matter of fact, he expressed the belief that there may be up to three separate groups of traffickers that are involved, and that most of the women leave Guyana knowing fully well what they were coming to the Island to do.
He lamented that this is very bad for genuine regional integration and bad for other genuine Guyanese travellers as a whole.
Nonetheless, the immigration department on the Island intends to start taking a closer look at those that are already there and those young women who may be planning to arrive in Bridgetown.
The immigration department itself believes that there might be a broader collusion and may even start looking among its own rank and file to determine whether there is a particular pattern involving any officer, address, or even ticket booking processes.
Nonetheless, the officials are confident that they will eventually crack the trafficking networks, and bring their heads and associates to justice.
As a matter of fact, Minister Hinckson in his missive, had indicated that those who are found guilty of trafficking women to Barbados will now face as much as 25 years in prison plus a one million dollar fine, which is in line with the Laws of Barbados.
The intelligence unit of the Royal Barbados Police are now said to be following several leads, and will eventually make some arrest, even if it takes months to properly identify and capture the masterminds behind the human trafficking network.