How Nigerian cult group traffics women into Europe
The Spanish police have raised the alarm about a Nigerian cult group, Supreme Eiye Confraternity, which is running a human trafficking racket and using British airports including Gatwick as entry points to traffic Nigerian women into Europe.
The Head of anti-trafficking at Catalonia police, Xavier Cortes, stated in an interview with British Broadcasting Corporation that the Nigerian cult gang had been “using forged documents and passports to fly its Nigerian victims into places like Gatwick.”
Cortes, who noted that members of the Nigerian cult group speak English language, said their choice of British airports to traffic prostitutes to Europe may be an indication that they were getting official help from Nigeria to obtain passports.
“These (fake) documents are expensive, though, and need co-operation of people working in the government to get,” Cortes was quoted as saying on the BBC‘s website.
The BBC, in a report, quoted the Spanish police as indicating that Supreme Eiye Confraternity had now resorted to using UK as opposed to crossing the Mediterranean Sea, which it had reportedly found to be deadly.
It quoted an unnamed Crime Squad Officer in Barcelona as saying that his team had bust a notorious Nigerian crime organisation running a network of trafficked prostitutes across the city.
Most of the women being trafficked by Supreme Eiye Confraternity are said to from Nigerian towns and cities, including Benin City.
According to the BBC report, the gang usually lured their victims with the promise that they would make money through prostitution and theyusually had no idea of the pain that they would be subjected to.
One of such women, whose name was not given, had told the BBC that, “I did not know I would be beaten and raped and have to have sex every night of the week.”
Another woman, speaking after she was freed by a recent Spanish police raid in Barcelona, said she had been hit over the head with a glass bottle after telling a gang member she could not meet his demand for payment.
“I had scars all over my body,” she told the BBC.
According to the report, a recent raid on the Supreme Eiye Confraternity in Barcelona took 18 months of planning and resulted in 23 arrests.
"But the SEC has hundreds of members running operations out of Ibadan, about 100 km (60 miles) northeast of the Nigerian city of Lagos," the BBC report said.
"In 2014, 70 per cent of nearly 900 Nigerian citizens applying for asylum in Britain had their applications refused, government data shows.
"Nigeria’s government has failed to comply with minimum standards for the elimination of human trafficking, though it has made some progress, the UK Home Office (interior ministry) said in a report on the country last year.
"More than 3,770 migrants and asylum seekers died in 2015 trying to reach Europe by crossing the Mediterranean Sea," the BBC stated in the report.
The Civil Aviation Authority reported that in 2014 over 240 million passengers passed through UK airports.
The surge in arrivals has heaped pressure on European police and authorities to break a network of organised crime spanning the continent.
The UK’s National Crime Agency reportedly said last year that number of people identified as potential victims of human trafficking in Britain rose by 21 per cent to 3,309 in 2014.
The nationality of the victims was known in only 2,100 cases of which nearly 9 per cent were Nigerian, the agency’s data showed.