12 Nepalese women, bar owner arrested in Nyali sex trafficking swoop

Saturday April 13 2019

Nepalese women

Some of the 12 Nepalese women who were arrested on April 13, 2019 in a police raid at New Rangeela bar in Nyali, Mombasa County, as pictured at Nyali Police Station. PHOTO | KEVIN ODIT | NATION MEDIA GROUP 

ANTHONY KITIMO
By ANTHONY KITIMO
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Twelve Nepalese women were arrested in a raid at New Rangeela Bar and Restaurant in Nyali, Mombasa County, early Saturday in what police said was an operation against human trafficking.

Police said the operation targeted an international sex trafficking syndicate, a kind of human trafficking for purposes of sexual exploitation.

In the raid at about 4am, the club owner was also arrested.

Asif Amirali Alibhai JeJetha had a Canadian passport but police said that was not his nationality.

PASSPORT

Coast region Deputy Police Commandant Joseph Chebii described the operation as successful.

“We have been following this for the past two weeks. After questioning the 12 girls, police discovered they sneaked into the country through Lunga-Lunga border but it is yet to be established how they managed to reach Kenya from Nepal," he said.

Mr Chebii said they were investigating how Mr JeJetha acquired the passport.

“He has been living in Kenya for some time but we are yet to establish how he got the passport and if it is genuine. We are working with different security organs in trying to unravel that since he is not a Canadian."

Mr Chebii said the 13 people were taken to Nyali Police Station and would be arraigned at a Mombasa court on Monday.

He said they were following a lead that would likely see more suspects arrested.

CRACKDOWN

The police boss said they were working with several security teams to stop sex traffickin and other forms of the vice.

Mr Chebii said they will ensure all porous borders are sealed.

“We have intensified the crackdown in bars to curb the vice especially this holiday season. We warn that the criminals will not be spared," he said.

Sex trafficking includes sexual slavery where a victim is forced, in a variety of ways, into dependency on the trafficker and giving sexual services to customers especially in bars and brothels.

Police have been accused of failing to seal off Kenya's coastline to stop the entry of illegal immigrants, a factor that has contributed to an increase in such cases.