Anti-human trafficking police officers have arrested seven men allegedly running a child prostitution ring in Bangkok. The gang had lured boys and girls to sell sex so that its members could buy drugs.
If the children refused to cooperate, they would be beaten or tortured with fire and blades.
The crackdown took place following tip-offs by members of the public, Pol Maj Gen Worawat Watnakornbancha, chief of the Anti-Human Trafficking in Persons Division said.
Fourteen boys and girls aged 10-16 fell victims to the gang, and the girlfriends of the suspects also sold sex, Pol Maj Gen Worawat said.
“There were several groups of customers who were charged 300-500 baht per visit, he told the Bangkok Post.
The suspects operated from a hotel near Hua Lamphong train station in Bangkok.
The Anti-Human Trafficking operation involved a lock down of the hotel and searches of six other locations. The Anti-human trafficking police seized mobile phones and bank passbooks.
“The suspects admitted to committing the crime for at least four months. Several of them also had drug and robbery records. Pol Maj Gen Worawat said they will question them, before we hand them over to narcotics police.
Officials from the Social Development and Human Security will take care of the children.
Anyone who has information about child abuse or human trafficking can contact police on the 1300 hotline.
Thailand has a reputation for being a center for child sex tourism and child prostitution. Although domestic and international authorities have worked to protect children from sexual abuse and human trafficking.
The human trafficking of children, like other forms of child sexual abuse, does not only cause of death and high morbidity in millions of children. Its also a gross violation of their rights and dignity.